The University of New Mexico School of Engineering hosts more than 120 area middle school and high school students on Sat., Sept. 27, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Centennial Engineering Center for MathMovesU, an event to promote the STEM disciplines of science, technology, engineering and math.
The event, sponsored by Raytheon, is one of many such events that the company holds around the country. It is the first such event to be held in New Mexico.
“Raytheon believes that tomorrow's engineers and technologists need to be excited by and interested in math today,” said Steve Bennett, president of Raytheon’s Ktech facility in Albuquerque. “MathMovesU connects with students from elementary school through college in order to address the STEM education crisis.”
Students spend the day on various hands-on activities led by four engineering student groups: American Society of Chemical Engineers, Society of Women Engineers, Hispanics in Engineering and Sciences Organization, and the National Society of Black Engineers, as well as UNM’s Engineering Student Services. Two of the four National Science Foundation Engineering Research Centers in the School of Engineering are also participating.
Activities include a space simulation project, making water rockets with recycled materials, making balloon cars, making LED artwork, an activity with nanomaterials, and building, testing and flying gliders.
Students can share their experiences with engineers from Raytheon and UNM during morning and afternoon group projects. During lunch, UNM students talk with the middle and high school students about preparing for the college experience in STEM. Also featured are informational videos about engineering at UNM.
“This event will engage middle and high school students in exciting hands-on STEM projects and will also allow students to see how their involvement in STEM now will lead to college and real careers down the road,” said Stefi Weisburd, outreach and education manager for the School of Engineering. “It's also gratifying for UNM students to show the next generation of engineers and scientists how fun and fascinating science and engineering can be.”
New Mexico Mesa, a statewide program that prepares middle and high school students throughout the state for college STEM careers, is also a partner in the event.