CWU News

National Teacher of the Year to Deliver CWU's Commencement Addresses

Alumnus Jeff Charbonneau, selected as the 2013 National Teacher of the Year, will deliver the keynote commencement speech at all three Central Washington University ceremonies. Charbonneau, the 63rd National Teacher of the Year, was recognized by President Barack Obama in a ceremony at the White House last year.

An Eastern Washington science teacher, Charbonneau said being named National Teacher of the Year was about "showing my students what they can do and, hopefully, give them the same passion for their profession, whatever it happens to be."

Charbonneau created programs that allowed his Zillah High School students to earn college credits and revitalized the high school’s yearbook and drama programs. He also started a robotics curriculum that provides students the ability and equipment to design and build a competition robot. In his “spare” time, he launched an outdoors club that led student exploration as far away as Montana.

Charbonneau is a 2000 CWU graduate in biology education, who also received his biology teaching certificate in 2000; and his broad area science-teaching certificate, in 2004, from CWU. In 2005, he earned his Master Teacher degree from Central. Always eager to learn something new, in 2012 Charbonneau completed certification in Career and Technical Education.

In addition, Charbonneau teaches online professional teacher certification courses and facilities the online National Board Teacher Certification candidate program through the CWU Office of Continuing Education. He also is a teacher in CWU's Cornerstone program, which allows his high school physics students to earn college credit.

CWU’s commencement ceremonies will be held at 9:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. at Tomlinson Stadium and at 1:00 p.m. at ShoWare Center in Kent. For more information on the 2014 Commencement activities, go to

Media Contact: Valerie Chapman-Stockwell, Public Affairs, 509-963-1518,