Weber State Summer STEM Program Goes Virtual
OGDEN, Utah – Weber State is going virtual this year to host PREP (Pre-Freshman Program), a rigorous seven-week summer course in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) for students in seventh to ninth grades. The program will be held using ZOOM beginning June 29 and running through Aug. 6.
“We are disappointed we won't have the students on our campus, but we’re excited to hold PREP virtually,” said Dana Dellinger, WSU PREP director “We are retaining the most important elements of the program. Our students will still stretch themselves academically and intellectually, meeting new people and interacting with college students and each other. It is going to be a unique experience for everyone.”
Seventh to ninth grade students in Weber, Davis and Ogden school districts, who maintain a B+ average in their math classes, achieve good grades overall and have a teacher recommendation, are eligible to apply.
Students typically attend PREP for three consecutive summers. First-year students are introduced to logic and its application to math, engineering and problem-solving. Second year is for algebraic structures, physics and more math-related problem-solving. The third year focuses on technical writing, probability and statistics, and computer science.
This year, participants will attend PREP four days a week from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. In addition to regular course work, students can participate in projects, mini-classes and challenges from the college student program assistants.
“I love working with the students and watching them get excited about the things they are learning,” said Sarah Stamps, WSU PREP site coordinator and physics major. “As a physics student, I love that students are getting this exposure to science and engineering. Watching them develop passion and determination through these tough subjects shows how much they're capable of and will surely help them succeed in the future.”
With careful adherence to COVID-19 guidelines, students will also participate in “PREP in the Park” for class projects such as a bottle rocket competition and physics experiments. This will allow students to interact with each other in a safe environment.
“One of the benefits to PREP is the opportunity for students to make connections with their peers and teachers,” Dellinger said. “We have tried to be creative in still offering those experiences while also following safety guidelines to protect the health and welfare of everyone involved.”
The program is offered free to students thanks to a partnership with the Davis, Ogden and Weber school districts, WSU’s College of Engineering, Applied Science & Technology, College of Science, the Sorenson Foundation, Hill Air Force Base STEM, Wadman Corporation, Northrop Grumman and the Noorda Foundation.
The program, now in its sixth year, was designed to prepare and motivate students to pursue studies and careers in STEM fields. More than 450 students have been involved in the program since its inception in 2015. To learn more about PREP, visit weber.edu/wsuprep.
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