I think how lucky I was to have teachers that exposed me to science and then motivated me to become a teacher. And then I think how lucky I am to now work alongside those teachers as their peer where they continue to help me evolve, push me to lead, and how we collaborate to bring the best science education to the next generation of students. Teaching is not just the work of one person, but of a community. This award honors the power of that teaching community to make a difference.

Eric Friberg Mendota Heights, MN | 7-12, Science, 2019

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

Eric Friberg is currently a science teacher at Henry Sibley High School, his alma mater, and has taught 10th grade Biology, Advanced Placement Biology, and English Learners (EL) Biology since 2011. Eric works to put students in a position to have a relevant, rigorous, and active science education. With his team, he redesigned the biology instruction to be tightly aligned to standards, relevant to students, structured for efficient learning, integrated with technology, and built on phenomena that connect to students’ lives. These changes have led to both high levels of achievement and narrowed gaps. Seeing a need in his classroom, Eric led the creation of an EL sheltered science program that has increased engagement and access to science and English for immigrant students . Eric has brought students to the Caribbean during the summer for a rigorous marine biology field experience. Students learn SCUBA, study coral reef ecology, engage with local scientists, and build a relationship with nature. This often puts them on a career path involving science or the environment. Eric has held leadership roles in the school including Science Department Chair, leadership team member, and union representative. He has delivered workshops at both the district and state level with themes around using technology to teach science, co-teaching, and EL instruction. Internationally, he has led work around best practices in science instruction in Thailand and through the Fulbright program in Mexico. He has consulted with EdTech companies, including Pivot Interactives and Andamio Games, to help create useful tools for best teaching biology concepts. Eric earned a B.S. in biology and a M.Ed. in science education, both from the University of Minnesota. He is certified in life science education.