Tabby Ramsey ’13
Tabatha Ramsey came to Butler in 2009 to study Biology. She ended up graduating with a double major in Biology and Science, Technology, and Society.
She went on to earn a master’s in climate change from North Carolina State University, and now she’s a Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellow, teaching science in an Indianapolis Public Schools middle school.
“My whole life’s been a lot of trial and error,” she said. “I was not expecting to be here. But I’m glad I am.”
Ramsey grew up in northern Indiana in the small town of Akron. She visited Butler the summer before her senior year of high school.
“I remember walking to the car with my mom,” she said, “and saying, ‘This is it. I don’t need to look anywhere else.’ I just knew this was where I was meant to be.”
She planned to study to become a doctor, but “then I hung out with some doctors and started looking at an 80-hour workweek.” That changed her mind. So did a trip to Panama as part of Butler’s partnership with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, which is dedicated to understanding tropical biodiversity.
In graduate school, she did her research on ecosystem adaptations. She also came to a realization: “There’s a big problem with scientific illiteracy in America.”
“And the best way to combat that,” she said, “is to educate kids and get them to love science and find value in science. I think a lot of kids find science really boring. I don’t. I love biology, and I’m hoping I can instill that in kids.”
As a Wilson Fellow, Ramsey receives $30,000 to complete a specially designed, cutting-edge master’s degree program based on a year-long classroom experience. In return, she commits to teaching for three years in an urban or rural Indiana school that needs strong science, technology, engineering, and math teachers.
Ramsey said she hadn’t given teaching much thought previously, but she’s glad this career found her.
“I feel like it’s something I’ve been running from, but I feel like this is how I was supposed to end up,” she said. “It’s actually a really good career path.”