Bree and Emery started their STEM camp session with laughter, water and dust - lots of dust! Their goal for the afternoon was to assemble a desk lamp to take home. The two girls were participating in the Make it- Take it session of the camp. The lamps were made out of mixed materials; concrete, wood and a 3D printed lamp shade that had been produced in the college’s prototype lab. The participants were able to make the concrete bases themselves by mixing the ingredients and pouring the mixture into prepared molds. Even though some elements of the project were too time consuming to complete during the camp, students were shown all aspects of project creation. After finishing her lamp Bree said, “This is awesome! I learned a lot, like how to make concrete and that the main activator is the right amount of water. Mr. Scott made it fun and showed us the laser cutter in the giant shop.”
The girls were just two of the several middle schoolers that attended Morrison Tech’s inaugural STEM Camp. For two days Morrison Tech opened their campus to middle schoolers and designed four different STEM projects that students could choose from. The purpose of the camp was to encourage STEM awareness at a younger age.
Along with the Make it or Take it session the school offered three additional STEM related activities; Bridging into the Future, Robot Revolution and Coding4Kids.
Those participating in the Robot Revolution were able to build a robot piece by piece than take it to the “arena” to test it out. A four sided arena was built for the project and allowed the students to control their robots while performing various activities.
Upstairs in another classroom students were exploring basic bridge design and using a computer simulation to create their own, and creating their own design to test its strength and durability. Next door kids explored basic programming using raspberry pi’s, and applied their knowledge in a programmable smart car race.
All activities were hands on and taught by Morrison Tech instructors. The camp was open to any middle school aged child. Scott Connelly, Director of Career Services, said that there are no skill requirements for the camp, but campers leave with a strong grasp of the opportunities available to them in science, technology, engineering and math. Campers are shown that STEM is more than just textbooks and theory; STEM directly impacts the students in their daily lives. The non-exclusivity of the camp is crucial to supplying the large demand for STEM careers.
Morrison Tech is a two year college that awards an Associate of Applied Science degree in Engineering Technology and Network Administration. The college boasts a 97% career placement rate and was ranked #19 by Forbes Magazines top 30 Trade Schools in the nation list. For more information about the college please contact Admissions at 815-772-7218 x206 or firstname.lastname@example.org