If you missed the big USA Science & Engineering Festival in Washington, DC, last week, don’t fret: another fun, free educational opportunity comes this week, and this time closer to home. WashingtonExec’s fifth annual K-12 STEM Symposium is this Saturday, April 14, 2018, at The Nysmith School in Herndon, Virginia. The event, from 9 am to 3 pm, is the largest event dedicated to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in Northern Virginia.
This is a free community event with more than 4,000 students, parents, industry leaders, government officials and educators expected to attend. This year’s theme, Superheroes in STEM, will highlight STEM innovators, advocates and next-generation STEM superheroes. The STEM Symposium presents an engaging and fun way for guests of all ages to learn about the concepts, tools, and developments that impact our lives and shape our future
Here are some of the highlights you won’t want to miss:
1. Meet astronaut Cady Colman. A retired United States Air Force Colonel, former NASA Astronaut and local WT Woodson High School alum, Cady has spent more than 180 days in space, accumulated during two space shuttle missions and a six-month expedition to the International Space Station. Today, she advocates for inclusion in STEM and STEAM fields. (Fun fact: Cady coached actress Sandra Bullock in preparation for Bullock’s role as a stranded astronaut in the movie “Gravity.”) Cady will speak at 1:15 p.m.
2. Dive into interactive exhibits, including a slime creation station, an egg drop station, virtual reality and mixed reality demonstrations, ice cream making, 3D printers and more.
3. Meet the “Roboroach.” How does a cockroach’s nervous system work? Explore the Roboroach station where you can control the movements of cockroaches via Bluetooth from your smart phone.
4. Celebrate women in STEM. Visit Altamira’s expanded “Girls in STEM” interactive wing highlighting the achievements of women in STEM professions.
5. Go sky high in Vencore’s flight simulator. Kids and adults alike will have the opportunity to see what being a fighter pilot is like.
6. See what it’s like to build a satellite. Take part in the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation’s (USGIF) imagery analysis activity and satellite build.
7. Get the student STEM perspective from Anna Lulushi, a senior at the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, who will discuss her passion for STEM and her future plans. Anna will speak at 2:00 p.m.
8. Hear NASA Chief Information Officer (CIO) Renee Wynn speak on what it takes to be a superhero in STEM. Wynn originally joined NASA in July 2015 as the Deputy CIO. She is scheduled to speak at 9:45 a.m.
9. See winners of the first annual STEM awards program recognizing and honoring businesses and individuals for their efforts to develop or promote K-12 science and technology programs that add value to the local community and inspire the next generation of STEM leaders. Awards will be presented at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.
10. Meet historical figures. Race with Washington Nationals mascot Thomas Jefferson and hear America’s greatest inventor, Benjamin Franklin, speak at 12:00 p.m.
The symposium is open to the public and credentialed media. Free, advance registration is required via the event website at stemsymposium.com. Food and beverages will be available for purchase on-site. The symposium is organized by WashingtonExec, a private membership organization that hosts business events and publishes a daily digital magazine serving the National Capital Area.