Best of the Boat school teacher (K-12): Eric Nilsson |

Best of the Boat school teacher (K-12): Eric Nilsson

Steamboat Springs High School science teacher Eric Nilsson was voted Best School Teacher (K-12).

Talk about some street cred. Eric Nilsson used to work as a plutonium engineer for the U.S. Department of Energy. This, plus his ability to convey information to his students while keeping it fun, helped him rise to the top of the class as the year’s Best School Teacher.

“I never considered becoming a science teacher. I thought I’d be an engineer forever,” the Steamboat Springs High School instructor said. “But I got to a point where I wanted to inspire the next generation. It’s their turn, especially with all the issues the world is facing. We need kids interested and excited about all this stuff.”

From having his students design packaging to keep eggs safe in a collision to constructing cardboard vessels to race across a swimming pool, he’s doing that and more.

“The engineering background is, ‘Let’s do it, let’s build stuff,’” he said. “There’s a real connection between building it and seeing it on paper.”

Best School Teacher (K-12)

• Winner: Eric Nilsson

• Runners-up: Meghan Hanson-Peters and Bennett Colvin

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