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The Lee County School District held its 2nd annual STEMTASTIC event at the Lee County School District Building on March 31, 2012. With over 130 booths and nearly 1200 participants, the event proved that SW Florida is not only ready for STEM, but ready to be leaders!
Students from the STEM@Work program recently paid a visit to the Lee County Emergency Operations Center where they were given a tour of the new building construction site. The state-of-the- art building will house meeting rooms for emergency personnel and media crews and will be the new basis of operations for Emergency Management. Keith Litzell, with HSA Engineers & Scientists, spoke to the students about Civil Engineering and the site development, while Gary Griffin from B&I Contractors talked about the HVAC and power generation requirements to keep the EOC completely self-sufficient and operational for 7 days. Representatives from the ECO met with students to discuss the behind the scenes emergency management plans and how they go into effect.
TechMatch 2012 was held on April 17th at Edison Collegiate High School. The event featured an industry panel who presented on topics including: STEM, internships and developing the local technical talent pipeline. Approximately 100 students and faculty in attendance and students were very interested in what business owners would like to see from them as potential employees.
STEM@Work Wrap-Up Event
The Foundation for Lee County Public Schools, Inc. has been leading the effort to step up STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) initiatives in the Lee County School District. One of the programs, STEM@Work, had a very successful school season. The STEM@Work program held their wrap up festivities at City of Palms Park on April 27th from 8 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Students participated in a “Complete Streets” presentation based on their assessment of City of Palms Park. The students who have been participating in the STEM@Work program went out in teams around the park, and based on their experiences and what they have learned, came back and gave a short presentation with regard to their suggestions.
As a special guest, Ed Moriarty from MIT’s Edgerton Center was on hand to provide the students and business partners with STEM related projects and hands-on activities such as the design of lego string racers. Members of the Miracle Baseball Team were also present to help Ed demonstrate the physics of baseball using a high-speed camera.
On April 28, 2012 the Edison Ford Winter Estates hosted the final TechChallenge event sponsored by Algenol Biofuels. The event featured several STEM related challenges including balloon powered racers and a challenge that involved golf balls, toothpicks and foam board. Students were asked to create a maze out of toothpicks that would allow their golf ball to stay on their boards the longest. The event marked the end of the four-part Tech Challenge series and plans to expand the event for next year are underway.
Fort Myers Middle Academy
The Edison-Ford Winter Estates has been working with Fort Myer’s Middle Academy’s afterschool program from 4:15 - 5:45 p.m. for a hands-on demonstration of engineering principles. If you are a first time engineer volunteer, this is a great way to get involved without a lot of prep work! As the engineer, you’ll give a brief 5-10 minute talk about what makes being an engineer so cool and then you’ll be there to help guide the students in the hands-on challenge. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Merry Coffman at 239-335-3671 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Glen Beitmen at email@example.com.