Event Aims to Make Math and Physics Appealing to High School Students

Event Aims to Make Math and Physics Appealing to High School Students

Many students do not know what STEM college and career options are available to them other than engineering and teaching.  The physics and mathematics departments at the University of Central Florida are hosting a half-day event so students can hear about the well-known and not so well known career opportunities in the STEM fields – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

STEM has been a powerful engine of prosperity in the US since World War II. Currently, American students’ performances and enthusiasm in STEM education are inadequate for the US to maintain its leadership in science and technology unless we motivate a new generation of US students toward STEM careers, some experts say.

Students from 32 high schools in Seminole and Orange counties will participate in the event at the Physical Sciences Building room 161 of the University of Central Florida at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 12.  About 200 students and their parents will hear from mathematicians and physicists about working in these fields doing an array of exciting things including:

  • modeling & simulation
  • video game design
  • keeping space ships safe during missions
  • brain scanning and understanding brain cognition
  • how math helps protect communities from hurricanes, etc.

Various speakers will give talks and the College of Sciences Dean Michael Johnson will also share his story about becoming a physicist.  Tours of department facilities, including a behind the scenes look at the Math Lab and Mathematics Mall will be given.

Light breakfast & lunch will be provided thanks in part to the Florida High tech Corridor Council (techPATH), a co-sponsor of the event.  There will also be an opportunity to enjoy ice cream and one-on-one discussions with faculty members and students who are majoring in math or physics.

The mission of the department of physics is to provide education and perform research at the highest level.  In fulfillment of this mission, the department educates students at all levels from general education, through preparation for teaching and scientific careers, to doctoral and post-doctoral education.  This education is expected to provide the necessary background to understand the fundamental universal laws that govern the behavior of matter and energy.