For over 75 years, the Delaware Valley Science Council has engaged high school students in competitive programs to identify, evaluate, and award top area students in the STEM fields (Science, Engineering, Technology, and Math). This was done through testing, completing questionnaires, and interviews by teams of Delaware Valley scientists.
With changing times, the Council is moving in a new direction more in line with our intention to excite young students with varied levels of STEM interests and build knowledge and enthusiasm in a way that many more will consider these disciplines in their advanced education and for careers. This direction requires a more direct hands-on engagement with these subjects, and also a change in philosophy from simply recognizing and rewarding top students in STEM who have already likely planned their futures around these subjects. Rather, our plan is to seek out younger students and engage them through real-world STEM challenge projects, allowing for interaction with subject matter experts to help guide their work. We also recognize that team-based projects align more closely with what they should expect in college and the workforce, and also is typically more fun when work and knowledge are shared – and we can also reach more students. With any substantial change, we learn as we go, identify issues and barriers to success, and improve systems and processes for the next cycle. As such, 2024 will be a pilot year for this new program that we call the DVSC STEM Challenge.
See the “Our Program” section of the website for more details on this new pilot program for 2024.