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STEM Education: Science Can Be Fun!

Posted at 3:03 PM, Mar 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-01 18:03:34-05

S.T.E.M. is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.  

The demand for skilled workers in science, technology, engineering, and math fields (STEM) is closely linked to global competitiveness. Using creativity and innovation to address these challenges is critical to meeting this demand of skilled workers.

San Diego is considered one of the world’s most innovative metropolitan areas, and ranks #2 for producing the greatest number of patents in the nation.  

STEM learning matters. Get inspired – use your imagination, creativity and be part of the future of San Diego.  

STEM Students who explore technology and engineering solutions may be more likely to appropriately apply the concepts of mathematics to understand and address real life issues and solve problems or challenges. The principles of STEM may help to drive life success personally and professionally.

High School Programs
Motivating the most creative minds and preparing the next generation of “stem” leaders goes beyond the courses typically offered in California high schools. 

That’s why California state summer school for mathematics and science was created to explore advanced stem topics and provide opportunities for talented students STATEWIDE.

COSMOS is an intensive four-week summer residential program for students who have demonstrated an aptitude for academic and professional careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects. Talented and motivated students completing grades 8-12 have the opportunity to work with renowned faculty, researchers and scientists in state-of-the-art facilities, while exploring advanced STEM topics far beyond the courses usually offered in California high schools. Through challenging curricula that are both hands-on and lab intensive, COSMOS fosters its students’ interests, skills, and awareness of educational and career options in STEM fields.

COSMOS is offered at the four sites: UC Davis, UC Santa Cruz, UC Irvine, and UC San Diego, simultaneously.  The Statewide Office is located at UC Davis.  

Middle School Programs
The San Diego Supercomputer Center’s GirlTECH program is partnering with Expanding Your Horizons of San Diego, part of a national program of conferences designed to inspire girls in grades 6-10 to recognize their potential and pursue opportunities in STEM fields. Last year, Expanding Your Horizons expanded their program to support the growing needs of our community in engaging young women in science, technology, education and math. EYH now includes the annual EYH conference for girls in grades 6-10, a Teen STEM café program for girls in grades 10-12 designed to engage students with working STEM professionals throughout the school year, and a network for undergraduate women that are pursuing careers in STEM. Coupled with SDSC’s broad range of summer programs, its Grace’s Coding Club for middle school students and its two high school internship programs, their collaborative mission to engage young women in STEM is bigger than ever!

After School Programs
From a youth development perspective, the YMCA of San Diego County is helping all children reach their full potential by supporting them through STEM/STEAM education. 

Youth are engaged in year-round STEM activities throughout San Diego County. They’re learning how to solve a problem, develop critical-thinking skills, getting comfortable with failure and trying again, but above all else, they’re able to see themselves in a STEM career when they grow up.

At the South Bay Family YMCA for example:

  • Robotics camps incorporate STEM/STEAM curricula into traditional camps.
  • NEW! Check out the Lego Robotics program. 
  • STEAM clubs run every Friday with the annual family STEAM Fair – last year more than 500 people attended!

For more information about any of the YMCA STEM / STEAM clubs and activities check with your local branch.