June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
Minorities in Engineering
14.1324.1 - 14.1324.40
Using Hands-On Learning in an After-School Engineering Program to Promote STEM Careers to High School Students
Pre-college exposure to Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) concepts can generate enthusiasm and encourage students to pursue careers in these fields. This work describes an approach to teach STEM concepts to minority high school students via hands on activities and seminars in an after-school program at Tri-Cities High School located in East Point, Georgia. The primary objective of this after-school program is to use hands on activities and seminars to stimulate interest in STEM fields and invoke college pursuits. This paper discusses the activities and seminars conducted during the 6th programmatic year. The weekly activities and seminars promote skills in four key areas: academic excellence, leadership, technical/professional development, and teamwork.
Academic excellence was promoted by beginning each meeting with a Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) math question and participation in a math and science quiz bowl with high school teams from six different states. Leadership skills were gained through constructing and implementing Rocket Building workshops targeted to middle school students at a regional engineering conference. Technical skill development was fostered via hands-on STEM activities that included, constructing alarm systems, designing bio- diesel devices, egg drop design competitions, and miniature boat building. Professional development was promoted through a public speaking seminar, and a college tour which included an admissions seminar, college engineering club seminar, and engineering and science research lab presentations. All activities were established to encourage collaboration and enhance teamwork skills.
Details on the procedures used to implement each activity and seminar are included in this work. Suggestions on pre and post program assessment methods to measure student confidence and interest in STEM related careers are discussed. Projected assessment techniques seek to track the effectiveness of the four key areas: academic excellence, leadership, technical/professional development and teamwork in the promotion of STEM career interest and pursuits amongst minority pre-college student participants.
Fairley, J., & Prysock, A., & Archer, A. (2009, June), Using Hands On Learning In An After School Engineering Program To Promote Stem Careers To High School Students Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5458
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