PULLMAN, Wash. — The Cyber Mentoring Project, which was created by Washington State University Professor Gerald Maring to link future teachers at WSU with students in high-needs K-12 classrooms, was selected to receive the Outstanding Distance Education Innovation Award 2003 by the National University Telecommunications Network.

Maring’s project is part of the WSU College of Education’s CO-TEACH program, a federally-funded project to create model teacher preparation programs in the Pacific Northwest. Using the latest in computer video conferencing technology, Maring’s students at the Pullman campus become cyber mentors, working with K-12 students at various rural schools to both improve student learning and provide better preparation for the future teachers.

Maring plans to attend the NUTN annual conference in San Antonio, Texas, on June 3 to receive the award and make a presentation about the project.

NUTN is an international consortium of institutions of higher education focused on all aspects of distance learning. According to NUTN spokesperson Joy Riach, the San Antonio conference will include distance learning professionals from the United States, Canada, Australia, Africa and Europe.