By Lindsay Owens
---- — Over 20 area high school science teachers had the opportunity to attend the “Bite of Science” dinner last week at WestGate Academy.
The program, whose mission is to, “assure a future of talented diverse U.S. workforce in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM),” was sponsored by The Center for Excellence in Education and Naval Surface Warfare Center at Crane and is part of the Teacher Enrichment Program. “Bite of Science” is one of six components of the Teacher Enrichment Program.
Other components include: “Lab Bench”, “Clearinghouse”, “CEE Blog”, “Teacher Roundtables”, “Public and Private Partnerships”.
“Bite of Science” brings 25 teachers together with two leading scientists and/or engineers. During the events teachers have the chance to interact with researchers involved in government, academia and industry.
Locally, “Bite of Science” professional development session is estimated to impact over 3,000 students in Daviess, Martin and Greene county this year. Last weeks’ event featured Dr. Steven Seghi, a materials scientist at Crane and Ross Giesler, a Continuous Improvement Engineer, STIMULUS Engineering.
“The Center for Excellence in Education was pleased to have Greene, Martin and Daviess county teachers attend “Bite of Science”, said Dr. Natasha Schuh-Nuhfer, director of the Teacher Enrichment Program.
“The facility was kindly provided by NSWC Crane’s STEM Outreach Office,” said Schuh-Nuhfer. “The STEM office also assisted with outreach to local teachers.”
Schuh-Nuhfer said that both Seghi and Giesler spoke about their careers in materials science and engineering. “Dr. Seghi performed some demonstrations the teachers could conduct in their own classroom to excite their students about science and engineering,” Schuh-Nuhfer said. “Mr. Giesler gave teachers the opportunity to play with a Combat Craft Forward-Looking Infrared or FLIR, imaging apparatus.”
Deborah Asbell, a teacher at Shoals, said she felt that both speakers made her feel as if her job, as a high school science teacher, was still important. “They made me feel that I can make a difference in my students lives and that our students don’t have to be good at everything to be good at something.”
“The”Bite of Science” program was a wonderful opportunity to see real-life applications of what we teach in the classroom everyday,” said North Daviess science teacher Monika Glade.”It’s much easier to engage students with the curriculum when we can relate it to practical applications. I’m thankful for the programs Crane STEM Outreach puts on for local educators.”