STEM BUDDY PROGRAM
In the STEM Buddy Program, each student or a small group of students are paired with an employee or two who serve as the students’ mentor throughout the year. Buddies meet twice a month for a half hour and discuss everything from career interests and hobbies to sports and university. The program provides students a chance to get advice, network and practice their communications skills.
The Grow to Win capstone is an example of GE involvement in the capstone planning process and execution. Every quarter MC2 STEM staff plan a new trans-disciplinary project for the students to engage in and learn from and in each of these projects, GE team members work to provide real-world problems or technology innovations that can support the content.
In the Grow to Win capstone, students discovered how humans interact with nature in urban ecosystems. The goal was for them to understand the terms sustainable and efficient to apply them to designing improved urban communities and environments. Students researched green building techniques, alternative lighting, growth options and alternate energy. As a class, students collaborated in both science and humanities classes to draw parallels between physical and social emotional growth within themselves, societal growth within their communities, and biological growth within the environment. The capstone goal is to build and present for an end-of-quarter Exhibition Night to present their ideas to corporations that have the financial means to make an impact on their community.
The GE team, while supporting the project in numerous ways, mainly engaged in engineering class. Engineers volunteered their time to help the students design planter boxes that would support external manipulation to drive growth internally. The engineers also educated students on LED, Bluetooth and Arduino technology which they could use to control variables within the planter boxes. This project was a great way to bring GE’s horticulture technology along with engineering expertise to the classroom.
AMAZON ALEXA SKILLS GROUP
Bringing real-world projects is one of the key components of GE Lighting’s partnership with MC2 STEM. This year, students have worked with Amazon Alexa and the c by GE Sol in the inaugural Alexa Skills group. Led by Lighting’s Connected Home team members, students worked in the school’s Raspberry Pi lab, that was donated by GE, learning new computer software applications like Python and Codecademy with the goal being a new skill for Alexa. This pilot group and future groups will continue developing their logic and Alexa skills coding techniques.
Want to learn more? Spend a few minutes experiencing the life of a MC2 STEM student in these three videos: