This past Saturday Feb. 1, the College of Engineering and the College of Arts and Sciences hosted STEM Exploration day in various buildings on campus. With this being the 10 year anniversary of this event, thousands of families and students flooded the SUB, Kinesiology Building, Engineering Building, Micron Engineering Building, Civil Engineering Building and Environmental Research Building to participate in upwards of 70 activities.
Student Support Coordinator for the College of Engineering Leandra Aburusa-Lete said, “There is a huge demand for STEM majors in Idaho as well as nation wide, this event is really to get kids interested in science, technology, engineering and math early on.”
Hundreds of elementary, middle school, high school, and even Boise State students attended and participated in activities.
With over 70 activities to participate in some of the top attractions were Barbara Morgan, astronaut and educator who gave a speech. The Treasure Valley Math and Science Center had a Hovercraft that you could take a ride on. For the first time the Discover Technology bus hosted several hands-on activities and even had a demonstration of a 3D printer. Building an edible aquifer made of candies and ice cream was a popular attraction in the Engineering Building, along with Tie-Dye Chromatography hosted by the Micron Foundation. Junior finance Major Alex Meldrum said, “The virtual driving simulation was my favorite booth because it is helping people become more aware of how dangerous texting and driving is. It’s a serious issue that needs to be addressed.”
A big majority of activities were run by students from surrounding middle and high schools. Aburusa-Lete said, “Its really amazing how much support we have from industry, I mean Idaho Power, Hewlett Packard (HP), Micron. They are all providing money to sponsor the event but they are also coming here and running an activity.”
Several large companies were present to teach students and families about new and existing technologies. Hewlett Packard hosted a booth in which you learned how images were sent from computer to computer.
Boise State students involved in Microgravity University, a selective program in which students will get to experience hands-on learning with several great minds at NASA and the opportunity to test their experiments in weightlessness during a flight week hosted several booths in which they taught the effects of gravity and the differences of being on earth and being in space. Booths they hosted included building pop rockets and playing with toys in ways that they have actually been played with in space.
Jordan Scott, a senior electrical engineering student, one of few who is going to get the experience of participating in Microgravity University said, “We are in a technological age and the value of technology is endless. It’s a complete wonder of endless possibilities.”