Educator of the Week: Dr. David Yates, David Crockett High School

Educator of the Week

JONESBOROUGH, Tenn. (WJHL) — While there may not be a science to pinpoint what exactly makes an educator great, current students and alumni at David Crockett High School can attest to the workings of biology teacher Dr. David Yates.

For nearly two decades, Yates has taught all levels of biology at Crockett, including a course dubbed “Hillbilly Heritage” and a dual-enrollment class through Northeast State Community College.

The discoveries span beyond his classroom, however, as Yates continues to collaborate with a University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge laboratory to identify compounds found to kill bacteria that lead to lymphoma and breast cancer.

“We were a long way from a cure,” Yates said. “We are now partners with the University of Tennessee. If we get to the point of animal testing and human trials, the UT Medical Center will do all the testing. We just have to now provide the latex.”

Yates is hoping he can lead classrooms of innovators, researchers and scientists to take on the next generation of unanswered questions, scientific mysteries and medical anomalies.

One student’s drive to discover has already followed her beyond the walls of biology class.

“Dr. Yates is very good at developing self-motivation,” said David Crockett Senior Terra Fowler. “What he does is he gives a passion for something; it’s like a hunger you constantly drive for. He doesn’t have to make you do homework because you always want to learn in his class.”

And it is this drive — fostered by Yates — that will lead to scientific advancement and discoveries.

Congratulations to Dr. David Yates, this week’s Educator of the Week. To nominate an educator for our weekly feature, click here.

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