Supporting STEM: Strategies That Engage Minds ®

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NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (May 18, 2017)

May 18th, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

Learn about STEM outreach in June at STEM Industry Summit

May 11th, 2017

STEM Industry Summit is planned for Friday June 9, from 9 a.m. to noon at The Frontier in RTP.

Register here.

This is an event to convene employees from STEM companies around the Triangle who want to learn more about STEM outreach in the Triangle and how to do it more effectively and efficiently.

Summit includes a panel discussion on current STEM education statistics and outreach practices at current companies. Workshops are broken down into outreach skill level and outreach type with a Speed Meet networking session. Event ticket includes $5 coupon for the Fidelity Food Truck Rodeo on June 9.

Come out and learn more about STEM outreach and network with local companies who are successful in their outreach efforts. For questions, please email Sarah Windsor at windsor@rtp.org.

US2020 RTP is the organizer of this event and serves as part of a national movement to connect underrepresented minorities, girls and low-income students with industry partners working in STEM fields. US2020 RTP is focused on bringing people together to create sustained, high impact STEM engagement for K-12 and undergraduate students in Durham and Wake counties.

NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (May 4, 2017)

May 4th, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

2017 SMT Center Award Recap

May 1st, 2017

Slide01“Tonight we are gathered to honor some of the best in the state. All of the people being honored are examples of what can be achieved with hard work, creative thinking, and the right kind of support. We hope that tonight’s event will inspire everyone to do even more to make science, technology, engineering and math education in North Carolina the very best it can be.”

These remarks by SMT Center CEO and President Dr. Sam Houston began the 10th anniversary of the annual SMT Celebration, a showcase event that highlights the achievements of individuals and organizations from the past year. A crowd of 450 people enjoyed a reception and dinner at the Hilton North Raleigh on April 29, 2017.

In addition to recognizing STEM-award winning students and teachers across North Carolina, the SMT Center also highlighted its own awardees through video presentations.

This year’s award recipients were:

  • Business & Industry Award | FRC East
  • Champion Award | Al Childers
  • Outstanding K-8 Educator | Sherry Coren, Hendersonville Elementary
  • Outstanding 9-16 Educator | Erin Lawrence, Apex Friendship High School
  • Outstanding Administrator | Tisha Greene, Oakhurst STEAM Academy
  • Outstanding Informal Educator | Jonathan Frederick, North Carolina Science Festival
  • Partnership Award | ROCAME
  • Student Leadership Award | Shiaoching Tse, The Food Ark

The videos can be streamed through the SMT Center’s YouTube channel.

Our friends at EdNC did a wonderful job capturing the event through Storify.

Please consider nominees for next year’s SMT Awards, information is on our website and the deadline will be on Dec. 5, 2017.

SMT Center Announces 2017 Award Recipients

April 27th, 2017

SMT AwardsRESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – The North Carolina Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education (SMT) Center is pleased to announce this year’s recipients of the annual SMT Awards. They will be honored at the SMT Celebration event on April 29 in Raleigh, N.C.

The 2017 SMT Award recipients are:

Business & Industry Award | FRC East

  • For developing regional collaborative programs in STEM education to support project-based learning with a focus on aerospace engineering in eastern N.C.
  • For sponsoring a mobile fabrications laboratory for students and educators use

Champion Award | Al Childers

  • For promoting active engagement by young people in STEM activities; provides new and enhanced opportunities for young people to experience STEM activities
  • For helping to spark the interest of young people in STEM activities; Builds upon STEM experiences of young people in formal education settings.

Outstanding K-8 Educator | Sherry Coren, Hendersonville Elementary

  • For being a leader in STEM lessons and project based learning
  • For delivering standards by making real world connections

Outstanding 9-16 Educator | Erin Lawrence, Apex Friendship High School

  • For creating an authentic learning environment in her classroom
  • For fostering collaborative team projects across disciplines in STEM education

Outstanding Administrator | Tisha Greene, Oakhurst STEAM Academy

  • For integrating STEAM concepts (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) and initiatives into the students’ entire school day and extracurricular activities
  • For aligning professional development opportunities for teachers

Outstanding Informal Educator | Jonathan Frederick, North Carolina Science Festival

  • For his work with the North Carolina Science Festival, the first statewide festival of its kind in the nation
  • For highlighting the educational, cultural, and financial impact of science in our state through the Fesitval
  • For providing hands on activities, lab tours, nature experiences, exhibits, and performances to a wide range of the public

Partnership Award | ROCAME

  • For being instrumental in the diversification of the STEM pipeline by encouraging minority students to explore STEM fields
  • Providing students in southeastern North Carolina the opportunity to engage in STEM competitions, receive mentorship from minority engineers, and earn scholarships for higher education.

Student Leadership Award | Shiaoching Tse, The Food Ark

  • For creating a club as a freshman at Enloe High School called The Food Ark (TFA) as a response to the food insecurity she saw at her school
  • Evolving TFA into a 501c3 nonprofit that fights food insecurity by chartering clubs at schools, and by working with the community on partnerships and projects. Today, TFA involves more than 400 active student members across 6 chartered clubs.

The SMT Celebration is a yearly event that began in 2006 to celebrate the success of what is now known as STEM education across the state of North Carolina. The SMT Celebration recognizes participation in various STEM fairs and competitions from the past year.

“North Carolina has a rich tapestry of STEM education throughout the state,” said Dr. Sam Houston, president and CEO of the SMT Center. “We want to shine a spotlight on those who make this state a role model in STEM education for the country”

The SMT Center was founding in 2002 by the Burroughs Wellcome Fund to support North Carolina effort in what is now known as STEM or STEAM education. To clarify the acronym issue, the SMT Center refers to STEM as Strategies that Engage Minds™, as a method of engaging students in 21st Century learning skills.

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Contact – Lisa Rhoades at lrhoades@bwfund.org for more information.

NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (April 20, 2017)

April 20th, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

NC STEM e-Update (April 6, 2017)

April 6th, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (March 23, 2017)

March 23rd, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (March 9, 2017)

March 9th, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

North Carolina Students Selected to Share Science Projects in Beijing

March 6th, 2017

North carolinaRESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — Four North Carolina students have been selected as finalists for the North Carolina International Science Challenge (NCISC).  The NCISC is a yearly North Carolina science competition for high school students. The selected students travel to Beijing, China to present their science research projects at the Beijing Youth Science Creation Competition the third week of March.

The four students selected are:

  • Raymond Gao, senior, North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM)
    A Weighted Modeling Algorithm for Radio Astronomy Mapping
  • Arjun Keshava, senior, Wake Early College of Health and Science
    Detection of Smoking-Associated DNA Methylation Changes in the AHRR Gene Using High Resolution Melt Method
  • Dory Li, senior, NCSSM
    Protein-coated DNA Nanostructures: Development and Application in Drug Delivery
  • Ana Sofia Uzsoy, senior, NCSSM
    Drastic conditions call for drastic measures: the viability of terrestrial extremophiles in simulated Martian UV radiation

The competition requires students to undertake a research project, write an abstract explaining their research problem and present their research to a panel of scientists and engineers. The students selected spend a week in Beijing presenting their research, meeting students from other countries, and experiencing various cultural and scientific events.

The NCISC is offered jointly by the North Carolina Science, Mathematics and Technology Education Center (SMT Center) and the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center.

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Contact:  Lisa Rhoades at 919/991-5111 or lrhoades@bwfund.org

Two NC School Districts recognized for graduating students global ready

March 3rd, 2017

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and Onslow County Schools were recognized at the February State Board of Education meeting for achieving Global-Ready designation. They are the first two school districts to be recognized for having the programs and tools to ensure students graduate prepared to live, work and contribute in an interconnected, global world.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools was recognized as a Global-Ready Prepared District, which means that the district effectively implemented systems and processes to support global readiness. Also, many components of global education are embedded district-wide including sound, well-embedded practices that show a positive impact on students.

Onslow County Schools received the Global-Ready Model Designation, which means the district consistently implements systems and processes to support global readiness. The district is a leader for other schools to replicate or model. Global readiness is embedded in the school’s culture, and well-developed, cutting edge practices show consistent, high-level student impact.

North Carolina Department of Public Instruction Chief Academic and Digital Learning Officer Maria Pitre-Martin congratulated district leadership on their accomplishments saying, “These districts are leading the way in demonstrating the importance and effectiveness of global education practices in graduating students who are globally engaged and productive citizens.”

In 2013, State Board of Education members approved five commitments to help ensure students graduate globally prepared. These commitments – teacher support and tools, leading-edge language instruction, new school models, district networking and recognition, and strategic international relationship – led to a new focus on global education and recognition efforts that supported the State Board’s vision statement.

One of the outcomes was to develop criteria that define what it means to be a Global-Ready District or School. The Global-Ready District implementation rubric was adopted by the State Board of Education in May 2015 and embraces the tenets to provide:

K-12 world language opportunities for all students, and pathways for teachers and administrators to achieve State Board recognized badging;
career-ready employer requirements;
global school partnerships; and
local school board resolutions and plans on global education.

Additional information on the Global-Ready District Designation process and the State Board of Education Global Education initiative is available on NCDPI’s NC Global Education website.

Astro Advisory: The Vernal Equinox is coming!

March 2nd, 2017

Astronomers at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute point out that at 6:29 a.m. EDT on Monday, March 20 the sun will cross the celestial equator in the sky heading north.  This will be the first moment of spring.

What is the astronomical significance of this event?  At this moment the sun, in its apparent path around the sky, will stand directly over the equator of the earth.  It is one of two times during the year when this happens, the other being on the first day of autumn.

These are the two days of the year when the Sun is above the horizon for exactly half the day.  Thus, the length of daylight is equal to that of the night (neglecting twilight and atmospheric refraction) and this day is termed the equinox from the Latin for “equal night.”  After the equinox in March, called the spring or vernal equinox, the hours of daylight continue to lengthen with the sun above the horizon for a longer time each day.  This continues until the summer solstice in June (12:24 a.m. EDT on June 21).  Following the solstice the days get shorter until at the fall or autumnal equinox (next at 4:02 p.m. EDT on September 22) when the day and night are once again equal in length.

Since on the vernal equinox the sun stands directly above the earth’s equator, folklore holds that one is able to stand an egg on its end on that day.  This old wives’ tale is true; one can stand an egg on its end on that day!  However, the tale is only a half truth because, in fact, one can stand most eggs on their ends any day of the year, not just on the vernal equinox.

Try it!  (It really depends on the characteristics of the egg, not the date.)

NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (Feb. 23, 2017)

February 23rd, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

NC STEM Learning Network e-Update (Feb. 10, 2017)

February 10th, 2017

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NC STEM starts with you. Twice a month we provide an e-update on what’s happening in STEM, and our latest edition is now available for you.

View our e-Update in your browser by clicking here.

Not receiving an e-update? Click here to subscribe and get your personalized copy sent directly to your email address.

Gravity Games 2017: We’re ready to roll – are you?

February 7th, 2017

Drivers, on your mark … Registration is open and filling up fast as the 7th Annual NC Gravity Games get ready to roll in downtown Lenoir on Saturday, April 29.

The NC Gravity Games, a signature event of the North Carolina Science Festival, features a gravity-powered race and STEM extravaganza designed to get students revved up about science and engineering. The event is brought to you by Google, Appalachian State University, the University of North Carolina, and the City of Lenoir.

You can Register Online as well as review the 2017 Rules – which have been revised for this year.

We strongly encourage returning teams to challenge themselves this year by creating their cars from scratch and competing in our “Engineered” or “Engineering Challenge” divisions. Space in the kit car division is limited, so if you’re eyeing this category, please be advised that only three kit teams per school will be allowed.

Registration closes at midnight EDT on April 17.

Questions? Visit ncgravitygames.com or email at contact@ncgravitygames.com.