STEM. It’s even more than what you think.
Yeah, STEM is an acronym. It stands for Science Technology Engineering Math. But it’s more than that.
Here are just some of the STEM-related projects in which we’ve been engaged the last handful of years.
Boeing Programming Camp
30,000-foot overview: The drop-off rate for students interested in STEM is highest in the middle-school years. As part of the Boeing Distinguished Professorship in STEM Education, awardee Sola Adesope began the annual summertime programming camp in 2017. The participants learn basics of python and use programming games as an avenue to learn these real-life modern skills.
Keepin’ it real: We need students to stay in STEM. If programming games helps them keep interest in this, then sneaking vegetables into a nice pasta dish, we’re going to do it. The middle-school participants learn how to code and, by the time they’re done, most seem vastly more interested than when they started.
This is STEM and the “I” stands for “Indigenous.”
Project name: Culturally-Responsive Indigenous Science: Connecting Land, Language, and Culture
PIs: Paula Groves Price | Co-PIs: Kimberly Christen, Zoe Strong
30,000-foot overview: In collaboration with the Confederated Tribes of Warms Springs (OR), Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation (WA), and the Coeur d’Alene Tribe (ID), this seeks to 1) Increase Indigenous student engagement, particularly in STEM; 2) Develop a pipeline of Indigenous studnets in STEM and medical fields, and; 3) Contribute to Tribal missions to revitalize Indigenous languages.
Keepin’ it real: This uses a community-based approach to curriculum design. It weaves together western knowledge while honoring tribal culture, language, and sovereignty. The research teams provides really amazing events at Washington State University, and other locales, for Native American youth.