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Eight Weeks Short

March 16, 2010

Ventura College students participating in the Introduction to STEM Disciplines class, Spring 2010.

As Spring arrives it brings an end to another semester for Ventura College students participating in the Introduction to STEM Disciplines class. Running only eight weeks, the class introduces students to eight STEM disciplines including soil/plant science, chemistry, mathematics, architecture, geoscience, biology, physics, and engineering.

During the first four weeks, faculty from each of these disciplines present a short talk discussing the research and sub-disciplines within each of these STEM areas. Following the talk, students participate in exercises reflecting current research opportunities within the field.

The Introduction to STEM Disciplines class is really designed to be get students thinking about their own STEM interests. In order to facilitate this, the students are asked to present a talk where they introduce what their field of interest is, the current research and information relevant to that field, and what they might like to do if they pursued that field as a major. This project becomes the focus during the second half of the class, so during the later four weeks students work on their outlines and their rough drafts.

Finally, in the last week of the course, their projects are complete, and the real fun begins! Although pizza and soda are always sure to draw a crowd, that’s not the only reason everyone shows up to hear the student’s talks. The real fun is learning about the myriad interests of Ventura College students. This semester, student topics included artificial intelligence, stem cell research, automotive manufacturing, aeronautical engineering, and binaural hearing.

As we say goodbye to another successful semester, I would like to personally thank all of the faculty and students who participated. If you are interested in enrolling in this class, look for it in the class schedule listed as IDSV02, Intro to STEM Disciplines. Here’s looking forward to Fall 2010!

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