2014 Federal Laboratory Consortium Meeting 25 Februrary 2014 The 2014 FLC Stem AWARD Presenter: Mr. Jim Cusack Griffiss Institute 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD The Air Force Research Laboratory’s Information Directorate won the 2014 FLC Stem AWARD The Team: AFRL Information Directorate and Griffiss Institute Staffs The Program: A comprehensive STEM program addressing the needs of students from grade school to graduate school. Even parents! Covers urban, suburban and underserved rural school districts The Award: Only 3 pages Background/Context Roles Programs and Impacts 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM In school programs: Dimension U Robotics AFRL Competitions: Cyber Patriot Challenge Summer Camps: Robotics Camp Cyber Camps Internship and Mentoring Programs Regional Program for Excellence Minority Opportunities for STEM 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM (Cont’d.) Internship and Mentoring Programs Regional Program for Excellence Minority Opportunities for STE Workshops: “Staying Safe Online” Teacher Training 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM (cont’d.) In school programs: Dimension U A challenging and competitive math program Offered to elementary and middle school students Exploits their interest in video gaming to increase math skills. Training has been provided to 100 teachers from 10 different schools and over 2000 licenses for the program have been distributed. Impact: Teachers are enthusiastic with the results Improved student scores on standardized tests related to their formal curriculum. In Rome’s program alone math scores increased in the fifth grade by 10% and by 8% in the sixth grade. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM In school programs: Robotics In School Program A regional and national competitive program for elementary and middle school students Robot kits and training are provided to school districts for use in their technology classes. Impact: Trained 42 teachers and 30 members of the AFRL mentoring staff The team provided schools with more than 350 robot kits and incorporated the program in 10 schools’ technology curricula. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Competitions: Cyber Patriot A year round, national, high school cyber defense competition for students in grades 9-12. Students work in teams with an assigned teacher and a mentor from the Directorate on a compromised computer network and must return it to a working state. Students gain skills working on a team in a hands-on environment and learn about malware, worms, viruses, and malicious code. Impact: In the last four years the program has reached over 160 students and participated in 10 regional and national competitions. The Rome Free Academy Junior ROTC team mentored by Directorate researchers placed 1st for New York 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Competitions: Challenge Competition: For the last five years, the Information Directorate has hosted a week-long competition for high school seniors addressing real world problems defined by senior Directorate researchers. “Securing the Supply Chain Network,” “Determine how to Provide Trustworthy Information on the Public Internet,” “Going Green in the Cloud”, “Best Flight Path for Airborne Search.”. Each participating high school is allowed one team consisting of two students and a teacher. Impact: Students are exposed to real world problems and compete for paid summer internships at the Information Directorate and at local information technology companies. In the last 5 years the program has hosted 20 students per year. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Competitions: March Math Madness: A significant part of the DimensionU experience is “March Math Madness.” A one of a kind, local competition which engages teams of students from the targeted grades during February and March. Teams first compete within their grade with the highest scoring team advancing to the following week. Impact: More than 500 students compete and finalists spar in a school wide competition complete with a band and cheerleaders. Math scores have risen and student enthusiasm for mathematics and future interest in STEM has increased. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Summer Camps: Robotics Camp: A summer program that immerses middle school students in problem based learning by programming and controlling robots, the culmination of our in school programs. Impact: The team hosted five, one-week robotics summer camps in conjunction with the Mohawk Valley and Herkimer County Community Colleges. Since the inception of the summer program, the lab’s team has involved more than 650 students. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Summer Camps: Cyber Camp: This is a one of a kind program available to students entering 7th through 10th grade. Cyber experts from the Information Directorate, ITT-Exelis, Serco, and the Utica Police Department provide sessions Topics include: Computer and Cyber Basics, Cyber Ethics, Computer Components, Networking, Cryptography, Cyber Threats, Data Hiding, and Cyber Forensics. Impact: In the last two years we’ve conducted five camps of 30 students each for a total of 150 students. Inspired our “Staying Safe Online” workshops and, owing to its popularity, advanced camps are planned for older high school students starting in summer 2014. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Internship and Mentoring Programs: Regional Program for Excellence: A program the Directorate has participated in for last 20 years which has been incorporated in its STEM offerings. During the school year, high school students spend 40 hours with a Directorate researcher and participate in structured technology development activities for which students receive school credit. Impact: Provides students a sample of what is involved in a STEM career and acts as a huge confidence builder, convincing students they can succeed at STEM careers. This year the program mentored 20 students with over 400 high school students mentored since its inception. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Internship and Mentoring Programs Summer Internship Program: A salaried internship program at the Air Force Research Laboratory to attract and nurture both local and national scientific talent at the undergraduate and graduate student level. Canvassed over 330 academic institutions seeking quality candidates in specific STEM disciplines. Impact: In just the last two years, despite budget issues, there were 61 interns selected from a pool of 400 applicants in 2012 and over 700 in 2013. Successful applicants GPAs have climbed from 3.0 to 3.7 and many interns are now on the Directorate’s research staff. Broad geographic diversity 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Internship and Mentoring Programs: Minority Opportunities for STEM: Funded under the Joint Educational Opportunities for Minorities (JEOM) Program, the Information Directorate provides internships to minority undergraduate students to do research. Impact: Started just five years ago with just 3 students, recently over 30 Thurgood Marshall Students participated in the program. In addition, 3 former students are now full time scientists at the Directorate and enthusiastic STEM mentors. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Workshops: “Staying Safe Online” The Directorate realized it was successful in reaching a broad spectrum of students with its STEM programs, but recognized it was overlooking one significant group—parents and guardians. Parents of many of our students expressed concern for the online safety of their children and felt unable to guide their children’s online activities. Impact: Three free half day informational workshops were provided to over 100 adults. Valuable insight that help them guide their children’s online activities and encourage their involvement in STEM programs. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Workshops: Teacher Training Sustained support and training to teachers in delivering educational services outside their normal curriculum that could demonstrably raise math and science competency and subsequent performance on standardized tests. Impact: Trained over 100 teachers in the past five years of the program. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM STEM Publication: “Designing STEM Activities to Complement Neural Development in Children” Inspired by their involvement as mentors, four researchers in the lab coauthored and presented a paper titled, “Designing STEM Activities to Complement Neural Development in Children” at the 3rd annual IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference held at Princeton University, on 9 March 2013. The paper considered how new developments in neuroscience and cognitive psychology can be used to enhance classroom STEM education. The paper is being utilized by the Cornell Cooperative Extension to help inform parents and educators about the importance of neural stimulation during adolescence. 2014 FEDERAL LABORATORY STEM AWARD THE PROGRAM Full Spectrum: From grade school to grad school, the Information Directorate’s STEM Program has increased the geographic and demographic breadth of STEM involvement from a few local schools to schools across NY State and around the Nation. Diverse: The programs address the needs of urban districts with significant poverty, as well as suburban schools, and underserved rural districts. Supported: Comprehensive programs with significant community and growing financial support.