Presentation Title

Developing an After-School Program to Increase STEM Interest, Awareness and Knowledge of Young Hispanic Females in a Title I Middle School

Start

1-31-2019 1:30 PM

End

1-31-2019 2:45 PM

Short Description

This study investigated the effect of STEM-focused after-school workshops at a Title 1 middle school in West Palm Beach, Florida. Sixth-grade minority females participated in these workshops, with their STEM awareness and interest tracked over the entirety of a school year. Results showed a significant increase in the constructs measured. Increased STEM knowledge can contribute to a higher quality of life by opening educational and occupational opportunities previously unknown or misunderstood by the participants, their families and communities.

Abstract

Educators, politicians and industry professionals note that the number of opportunities for workers in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields grow exponentially over time. Accordingly, emphasis is placed on our schools to produce graduates capable of filling these positions. While these efforts are promising, there is a notable absence of females and minorities in the STEM professions. In an attempt to understand the reasons for this disparity, many educators believe a lack of interest in the STEM field begins at an early age, and disenfranchised students are not afforded the opportunities given to students in more affluent areas of a school district, city or state. This study investigated this issue by developing and delivering a series of STEM-focused after-school workshops at a Title 1 middle school in West Palm Beach, Florida. These workshops were presented by STEM professionals from the South Florida Science Center and Aquarium, local schools, industry and businesses. Sixth-grade students, primarily from an ethnic minority, low socio-economic background, were recruited for these workshops, with their STEM awareness and interest tracked over the entirety of a school year. Results showed a significant increase in the constructs measured. These results can contribute to a higher quality of life by opening educational and occupational opportunities previously unknown or misunderstood by the participants, their families and communities.

Format

Concurrent Session

Institutional level targeted

K-12

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Jan 31st, 1:30 PM Jan 31st, 2:45 PM

Developing an After-School Program to Increase STEM Interest, Awareness and Knowledge of Young Hispanic Females in a Title I Middle School

Educators, politicians and industry professionals note that the number of opportunities for workers in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields grow exponentially over time. Accordingly, emphasis is placed on our schools to produce graduates capable of filling these positions. While these efforts are promising, there is a notable absence of females and minorities in the STEM professions. In an attempt to understand the reasons for this disparity, many educators believe a lack of interest in the STEM field begins at an early age, and disenfranchised students are not afforded the opportunities given to students in more affluent areas of a school district, city or state. This study investigated this issue by developing and delivering a series of STEM-focused after-school workshops at a Title 1 middle school in West Palm Beach, Florida. These workshops were presented by STEM professionals from the South Florida Science Center and Aquarium, local schools, industry and businesses. Sixth-grade students, primarily from an ethnic minority, low socio-economic background, were recruited for these workshops, with their STEM awareness and interest tracked over the entirety of a school year. Results showed a significant increase in the constructs measured. These results can contribute to a higher quality of life by opening educational and occupational opportunities previously unknown or misunderstood by the participants, their families and communities.