NFC Connections Winter 2020 - Page 14

NFC prepares for STEM SEALs program and middle school engineering challenges. NFC AWARDED NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION $1.1 Million Grant N orth Florida College received a $1.1 million federal grant award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) in April to develop engaging, age appropriate STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) design learning experiences for rural middle school students. The three-year grant specifically focuses on middle school students in rural Hamilton, Jefferson, Lafayette, Madison, Suwannee and Taylor counties. Partnered with area educators and STEM professionals, NFC’s mission for the program is to 12 NORTH FLORIDA COLLEGE promote greater awareness of STEM pathways, to increase readiness of area students for STEM post- secondary study, and to build student skills and confidence in exploring STEM training and careers. The research will involve a collaborative team including area middle school teachers in the design phase, review phase and implementation phase. Design workshops began in early October at NFC. Once implemented, the STEM SEALs program - which stands for STEM Sea, Air and Land - will invite middle school students to participate in engineering challenges on the NFC campus. Each