2 minute read

Alumnus Wins Milken Educator Award

By Todd Fuqua

“Surprise” was an understatement regarding Tyler Finch’s (MED 15, BS 12) reaction when he learned he received a $25,000 Milken Educator Award, presented by the Milken Family Foundation during its nationwide tour honoring outstanding educators. The science teacher at Loving High School in Loving, New Mexico, was recognized for his innovation and creativity when motivating them to learn and prepare for life beyond high school and college.


The Milken Educator Awards, known as the “Oscars of Teaching,” celebrates the American teaching profession. The goal is to attract young, talented, qualified men and women to consider teaching as a career.

Dr. Jane Foley, senior vice president of the Milken Educator Awards, praised Tyler for his commitment to his profession and students.

“Through his high engagement and innovative leadership in and out of the classroom, Tyler Finch is making an indelible mark on his students, colleagues and community,” Foley said. “His expertise and creative use of technology to reach his students, effectively examine data to develop instructional practices and leverage his talent across the district are some of the exceptional attributes that make him a Milken Educator.”

Finch, who earned a bachelor’s degree in science in 2013 and a master’s in curriculum and instruction in 2018 from ENMU, chairs the district Science Department in Loving. He is also a football and track coach and created the Falcon Strong program for students on the field and in the classroom.

With a $25,000 prize, all Milken Award recipients join the Milken Educator Network of more than 2,800 top teachers and administrators. This network is a resource for further innovation and improvement in education.

New Mexico Secretary of Education Dr. Kurt Steinhaus, left, congratulates Tyler on his Milken Educator Award.

New Mexico Secretary of Education Dr. Kurt Steinhaus, left, congratulates Tyler on his Milken Educator Award.

Photo by Milken Family Foundation

“Tyler Finch represents the best of the best in our profession,” said New Mexico Public Education Secretary Kurt Steinhaus (MED 81, BME 76). “He inspires his students to succeed at the highest levels and reminds every educator in New Mexico why we joined this noble profession.”