MAIZE, Kan. (KWCH) A science teacher at Complete High School Maize won the prestigious Milken Educator Award.
Heidi Albin is one of 45 educators to win the award that is called the 'Oscars of teaching.'
The award included a check for $25,000, and she will travel to Washington D.C. for a Milken Educator Forum.
Albin's classroom is Star Wars themed, and her students said she has a way of making learning fun and exciting.
"I always knew that I wanted to help young people, and I've just always wanted to be able to be there for young people that needed someone to talk to," said Albin
She had no idea she would be presented with the award.
"I was completely shocked," said Albin. "They were saying that one educator from the building was going to get it, and I was standing there going through my head of all the staff and thinking I'm so glad one of them gets it because that's wonderful. They all deserve it."
She was shocked when her name was called, but her students said she deserves it.
"I was so proud of her, and I just felt this overwhelming happiness and joy for somebody I've looked up to for a very long time," said student Summer Jibril.
The Milken Foundation said it chose Albin because she's a leader. She also has unique practices to help students. For example, she uses a therapy dog. She applied for a grant to get the classroom dog, Kinsey.
"Students who may be having a rough day and to help calm them down," said Jane Foley, the Senior Vice President at the Milken Family Foundation.
Albin said she went through some difficult things when she was younger, so it's her goal to be there for her students.