From December 7-18, 2020 Los Alamos National Laboratory hosted a two-week virtual camp in wildfire simulation and visualization for 12 undergraduate students, the majority of them Native American.
Using the real-world data LANL scientists use to study wildfires, the students learned how to use the data analysis and visualization software application ParaView to develop graphical and animated representations that can aid in wildfire suppression to protect the public, ecosystems, watersheds, and air quality.
Part of a multi-year initiative through the Laboratory’s Student Programs Office (SPO) to increase the number of Native American student interns at Los Alamos, the pilot program was funded by the Laboratory and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists Office within the Office of Science.
The camp was a huge success and it is amazing how much the students were able to learn in such a short amount of time,” says organizer Cassandra Casperson of the SPO. “In addition to developing their technical and professional skill sets, the students learned about the work being done at LANL and other national laboratories.”
Many of the attendees are pursuing undergraduate degrees in computer science, environmental sciences, or engineering, following a call to Native organizations and higher education establishments across the region.
> Learn more about the Laboratory’s support for education in Northern New Mexico
Via Los Alamos National Laboratory News
Students Christopher Mendoza, Zachariah Burch and Joshua Mari Tamarra, all students from Santa Fe’s Capital High School, are the winners of the 2020 Congressional App Challenge for the Third Congressional District. Mendoza, Burch, and Mari Tamarra’s app, “Solar Age,” helps homeowners estimate their annual electricity usage and cost.
The Congressional App Challenge is a national app creation competition for students of middle and high school age. Student apps were judged on the quality of their ideas, including creativity and originality. Students from the district were encouraged to participate in STEM and computer science events throughout the year, including coding boot camps organized by STEM Santa Fe, a local nonprofit. ...
Via Los Alamos National Laboratory News
The Math and Science Advisory Council (MSAC) is a state-appointed group that supports the New Mexico Public Education Department by making recommendations for improving mathematics and science education in New Mexico. Part of the MSAC role is creating a statewide strategic plan, as shown above. Aligning the efforts of diverse educational entities and groups across the state around shared goals and methods will help build momentum and pulling together to achieve equitable and excellent STEAM education.
To view the MSAC annual reports, meeting minutes, and learn more about the council member appointment process, visit the MSAC page on the NM Public Education Department website, linked below.
Background on the MSAC:
"Per Senate Bill 552 passed during the 2007 legislative session, “The Math and Science Education Act” was passed. The Act created in statute [22-15E-1 NMSA 1978] the Math and Science Bureau in the Public Education Department, and a statewide Math and Science Advisory Council (MSAC). The MSAC is composed of twelve members appointed by the Secretary of Education for staggered terms of four years." —via the Math & Science Advisory Council
The STEM Education Coalition submitted a letter to President-Elect Joe Biden and the Transition Team with recommendations for federal education policy to expand STEM Learning.
The letter is supported by the STEMx network, managed by Battelle on behalf of 24 state-level networks across the U.S., and stands to represent the recommendations of the STEM Education Coalition, an alliance of more than 800 education, business, and professional organizations.
Key focus was placed on four principles:
See link below to read the full letter.
Via the STEM Education Coalition
The second annual New Mexico Governor's STEM Challenge and Statewide Showcase took place on December 12th, bringing together participants from 33 teams from public, private, & charter high schools across the state, along with judges from 18 New Mexico STEM employers, plus educators, volunteers & government officials.
“I’m humbled by the New Mexico talent on display at this year’s competition,” said Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham. “What a remarkable showcase of diligent, bright and hard-working students from all across our state. This has been a challenging year for all of us, not least New Mexico’s students. But our best and brightest will continue to shine, I have no doubt, and my faith in the ingenuity and strength of New Mexico’s young people has been invigorated by this year’s STEM competitors. I can’t wait to see what they do next.”
“What I most appreciated about the STEM competition itself, was the meaningful interactions between judges and teams about their submissions,” said LANL Foundation Director of Evaluation and Learning Kersti Tyson. “It was clear that students and their sponsors really persevered this year, and that even a pandemic cannot stop innovation — indeed perhaps it inspired some. It is great to see our state’s leadership rallying around these students through this competition.”
The results are in! Congratulations 🎊 to the winning teams & all those who participated!
Send us photos of your winning team to be featured in our social media! 📸
Via the New Mexico State University News Center
Contributors include the Northern NM STEAM Team, local educators, & advocates