Being selected for the Presidential Award, among so many dedicated and effective educators, is an incredible honor. It is due in great part to the mentors, colleagues, and students with whom I have had the privilege of sharing classrooms over the years. Helping students discover, experience, create, and innovate is a true joy. I hope that I can always model for them the value of striving, trying, and learning and the enjoyment that Feynman called "the pleasure of finding things out."

Joshua Gates Wilmington, DE | 7-12, Science, 2017

The official biography below was current at the time of the award.

Joshua Gates, an educator for 14 years, taught physics at The Tatnall School for 11 years including 11-12th-grade Honors and Advanced Placement Physics, Electronics, Electrical Engineering, and Creative Coding. He has served as the Director of Innovation, working with teachers and students in all grades in the school’s Innovation and Design Lab. Joshua also taught at Noble and Greenough and the Stoneleigh-Burnham School. He currently serves as Founder of SBGTools, LLC. Joshua places his students front-and-center in the process of discovering and applying scientific principles; rather than talking about science, he puts them in situations where they can succeed as scientists themselves. Joshua has presented on topics including the incorporation of 3D programming into the physics classroom and the use of standards-based grading to encourage student agency, incentivize retention, and foster student-teacher relationships. He has published articles on innovative professional development and novel experiments for physics education. Joshua earned a B.A. in physics and a B.S., summa cum laude, in applied mathematics from North Carolina State University, and a B.M. in music composition from The University of North Carolina School of the Arts. He holds a M.S. in science education from Montana State University and a M.S., with honors, in applied physics from Johns Hopkins University.