Texas Instruments grant will fund SMU training for DISD middle-school STEM teachers

STEM education

Texas Instruments grant will fund SMU training for DISD middle-school STEM teachers

Texas Instruments logoSMU will receive $1.7 million to train as many as 216 Dallas Independent School District middle school science teachers. The program will begin in summer 2017 and run for four years.

Texas Instruments and the Texas Instruments Foundation have committed $5.4 million total to advance public school education in science, technology, engineering and math. Most of the funds will be distributed in North Texas, and the rest will be earmarked for programs in the San Francisco Bay Area and southern Maine, where the company operates design and manufacturing facilities.

Dubbed Power of STEM Education, the initiative supports primary and secondary school programs with a special emphasis on opportunities for girls and minorities, who are underrepresented in science and engineering professions.

“Our focus is on collaborative strategies to improve teaching effectiveness and student success in STEM education,” said Andy Smith, executive director of the TI Foundation and TI director of corporate philanthropy. “We seek out effective partners who share our goals, make strategic investments and develop long-term relationships with educators and their organizations to support proven, successful programs that can be scaled and replicated. Working together, we believe all students can move forward and experience greater success in STEM.”

> Read the full story from The Dallas Morning News

August 16, 2016|News|

SMU’s Caruth Institute for Engineering Education names Leanne Ketterlin-Geller director of K-12 STEM Initiatives

Leanne Ketterlin-GellerSMU’s Caruth Institute for Engineering Education has named Associate Professor Leanne Ketterlin-Geller as its new director of K-12 STEM Initiatives.

A faculty member in education policy and leadership and director of research in mathematics education in the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development, Ketterlin-Geller will bring a cross-disciplinary focus to her new role with the Institute, housed in the University’s Lyle School of Engineering.

Ketterlin-Geller is an expert in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education, and her research focuses on mathematics education through instructional leadership principles and practices. Her new position will include working with the Caruth Institute’s Infinity Project, developing partnerships with area schools, working with Lyle engineering programs geared toward middle and high school students, and working with departments and faculty members to match their engineering expertise to K-12 outreach opportunities.

Ketterlin-Geller will work closely with Delores Etter, executive director of the Caruth Institute and TI Distinguished Chair in Engineering Education, as well as other faculty members from both schools to advance the K-12 STEM initiatives of the Institute.

“Professor Ketterlin-Geller’s extensive experience as a leader in STEM and K-12 education will bring much needed expertise in addressing the critical mission of the Caruth Institute,” Etter said. “Her role within the Simmons School of Education and Human Development will strengthen the necessary collaboration between our two schools.”

“The work that Dr. Ketterlin-Geller will direct is essential to our goal to increase the number and diversity of students with both the enthusiasm and knowledge to pursue the engineering careers that are necessary for the U.S. to compete in a global economy,” said Lyle Dean Marc Christensen. “This appointment demonstrates our commitment to the emerging collaborations between the Simmons School of Education and the Lyle School of Engineering. We look forward to what we can achieve together.”

“Through these Caruth Institute initiatives students will see the power of math in daily life – and engineering is where we really see this at work,” said Ketterlin-Geller. “We hope to develop engaging and interesting programs for both teachers and students that will help all students develop both confidence and competence in STEM fields. This collaboration presents an exciting opportunity to work across disciplines to help foster innovation in K-12 STEM education.”

A former high school science teacher, Ketterlin-Geller has served as principal investigator for federal, state, and locally funded research grants emphasizing the development of instructional materials and formative assessment procedures in mathematics. Much of her research is focused on supporting algebra readiness in elementary and middle school mathematics. She works closely with teachers and administrators to understand the application of measurement and assessment principles for making decisions in school settings. She publishes and delivers presentations on mathematics education, measurement and assessment as well as special education.

Ketterlin-Geller and Simmons School Dean David Chard are part of the national research team working on the George W. Bush Institute’s education initiative, Middle School Matters.

> Read the full story from SMU News

Lyle School initiatives win Navy funding for STEM advocacy

Young students at Visioneering 2010The Office of Naval Research (ONR) has named two programs within SMU’s Caruth Institute for Engineering Education to receive grants of $100,000 each for their initiatives that cultivate student interest and participation in science, technology, engineering and math – collectively known as STEM education.

The winners, based in the Lyle School of Engineering, are Dianna McAtee for her “Designing a STEM Advocacy Education Kit” for The Infinity Project, and Lindsey Groark for her “STEM Advocacy Kit for STEM Web Portals,” which supports the Caruth Institute’s Kids Ahead program.

The two SMU entries were among 12 winners chosen from more than 125 entries in the ONR’s Sponsoring Scholars in Science challenge, which is designed to help expand the pipeline of future scientists and engineers for the naval workforce.

“We are delighted that the Office of Naval Research has recognized two different programs within our institute as being important partners in the drive to create more scientists and engineers,” said Delores Etter, director of the Caruth Institute for Engineering Education. “These awards will allow us to reach more students and educators than ever before.”

The Infinity Project was developed in 1999 by the Lyle School and Texas Instruments in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education, the National Science Foundation and others. The yearlong Infinity Project curriculum is being used by hundreds of middle schools, high schools, and colleges in 38 states and has impacted thousands of students – more than half of which have been women and minorities. The Infinity Project is aimed at closing the gap between the number of engineering graduates currently produced in the United States and the large need for high-quality engineering graduates in the near future.

The STEM Advocacy Education Kit for the Millennial Classroom funded by the ONR award will include professional development materials for practitioners and educators, curriculum and instructional text that can be incorporated into inquiry-based learning and enhanced exercises for individual and group activities. The kit also will include guided lesson plans and material lists for each activity and multimedia resources for those activities.

Activities are designed to spark the imagination of students through projects ranging from the construction of a functioning loud speaker to designing and building a prosthetic leg. Through hands-on experiments and general coursework, Infinity Project students see that the math and science they have been learning is applicable to real-world problems and a wide variety of STEM occupations.

Kids Ahead is a web-based resource for middle school children founded by Caruth Institute director Etter just over two years ago. Kids Ahead is designed to spark the interest and passion of middle school children by providing access to quality web-based content, activities, projects, events and information. Kids Ahead also seeks to provide parents, teachers, club leaders and STEM volunteers the resources they need to make STEM activities a central part of young people’s lives.

Kids Ahead activities are built around subjects like forensics, robotics and wind energy. For example, Kids Ahead activities teach young people how to make and play their own Pacman game, how to analyze and interpret a crime scene in “The Case of the Barefoot Burglar” and learn applications for alternative sources of energy in “PowerUp: The Game.”

Written by Kimberly Cobb

> Visit Kids Ahead online
> Learn more about The Infinity Project
> Visit the Caruth Institute for Engineering Education
> More on the Lyle School of Engineering’s K-12 programs

February 2, 2012|For the Record, News, Research|

Science-engineering fair organizers seek judges for 2012 event

Beal Bank Dallas Regional Science and Engineering Fair logoThe Beal Bank Dallas Regional Science and Engineering Fair is calling for judges to participate in the 2012 event – and inviting the public for a free viewing of student projects 5:30-6:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, in Fair Park.

The nonprofit event is both a competition and exhibition for the best middle and high school research projects in the North Texas region, with nearly 1,000 exhibitors expected to participate.

The science fair, open to 6th-12th grade students, is organized and hosted by SMU under title sponsorship from Beal Bank. Beal Bank recently extended its title sponsorship through 2014, bringing the bank’s total support over the years to almost $1 million.

The event is run by volunteers, including Simon Dalley, senior lecturer in physics in SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences and president of the Dallas Regional Science and Engineering Fair.

“Science fair is a wonderful opportunity for children to cultivate their interest in science and engineering and to exchange ideas one-on-one with experts in their field of study,” Dalley says.

To qualify as a judge, candidates must have a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional experience related to the science categories they prefer to judge. For more information, visit drsef.org.

> Download the information letter and judge recommendation form at drsef.org/judges
> Find a complete schedule of Science Fair events (PDF format)

January 20, 2012|Calendar Highlights, News, Save the Date|
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