South Carolina Teacher of the Year Receives Keys to BMW X5.
State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman announced at a privately-funded event Wednesday evening that Jennifer Wise, a math teacher at Hand Middle School in Richland County District One, is the 2016 – 17 South Carolina Teacher of the Year. As part of the celebration, BMW Manufacturing, the event’s premier sponsor, presented Wise the keys to a 2016 Mineral White Metallic BMW X5 xDrive35i equipped with Mocha Dakota Leather. During her year-long sabbatical from the classroom, Wise will drive the BMW throughout South Carolina as the state’s public education ambassador.
“There are so many thoughts going through my mind right now,” Jennifer Wise said after the ceremony. “Excitement, thankfulness, and what a blessing and privilege this is to have the opportunity to celebrate education and the great teachers in South Carolina.”
A native of Gaffney, SC, Wise has been teaching mathematics to seventh and eighth graders in Richland County for the past eight years. She recognized her desire to become a math teacher in high school while tutoring her peers after school. She helps her students see the role math plays in their life by engaging in real world problems.
“I’m excited about the advancements we’re making in STEM education,” Wise said. “I also love to inspire young people to be teachers, because we need people going into the classroom to teach those future mathematicians, scientists, and engineers.”
“Jennifer is a wonderful example of the inspiration and dedication of our teachers in South Carolina,” said Sky Foster, Manager, Corporate Communication for BMW Manufacturing. “Our teachers do their job tirelessly, and they motivate their students to do their best. BMW is grateful for their commitment and enthusiasm in the classroom.”
Wise says using the BMW X5 for the next year will come in handy. “We have been a single car family for a while, so this X5 will be quite the addition to our garage,” she said. “I’m very thankful to BMW.”
Along with the BMW X5, Wise will receive a $25,000 cash award, a set of Michelin tires, and an exclusive celebratory ring from Jostens. She will also participate in Leadership South Carolina and take part in Notre Dame’s prestigious Excellence in Teaching Conference.
Wise was a South Carolina Teaching Fellow at the University of South Carolina, where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and Master’s degree in Secondary Mathematics. She succeeds Suzanne Koty, an English and Theory of Knowledge teacher at Sumter High School.
BMW Manufacturing currently produces more than 1,400 vehicles each day. The factory is the exclusive producer of all BMW X3, X4, X5 and X6 Sports Activity Vehicles and Coupes (and their variants) to more than 140 global markets. Last year, the Spartanburg plant produced 400,904 vehicles, making it the largest BMW plant in the world by volume. By the end of 2016, the Plant will have a production capacity of 450,000 vehicles and employ nearly 9,000.