DSHA STEM Scholars

The DSHA STEM Scholars program is designed for motivated high school students who are curious about and are willing to be highly engaged in learning and applying science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics; furthermore, a STEM scholar will show a commitment to STEM-related academic and career options.

The STEM Scholars program emphasizes:
  • specific course work
  • hands-on research and projects
  • learning beyond the classroom

According to Education Week, both private and public sectors report that 21st-century workers require skills that many of today’s graduates don’t have. Students need more in-depth knowledge of math and science, plus the ability to integrate and apply that knowledge to solve the challenges facing our nation.

STEM Scholars At-a-Glance

List of 7 items.

  • What is the purpose of DSHA STEM Scholars?

    Following the guidelines of ASEE findings, the DSHA STEM Scholar program is designed for a specific purpose—to integrate and apply knowledge of math and science in order to create technologies and solutions for real-world problems, using an engineering design approach.
  • How will DSHA STEM Scholars be formally recognized?

    • Special designation at graduation, on your transcript and at Senior Honors Night.
    • Committed engagement in various math and science classes, and in courses that apply math and science concepts in creative ways.
    • Small group meetings each semester in the program that provide enrichment opportunities, support and mentoring in STEM fields.
    • Learning about and applying the engineering design process as an approach to creative problem-solving.
    • Partnerships with local universities and businesses to support your STEM study and career interest.
    • Personal and professional growth and a head start on your career path.
  • What are the eligibility requirements for coursework?

    Required coursework:
    • Must take 4 years of science courses.
    • Must take 4 years of math courses.
    • Must take at least 1½ credits of the following courses: 
      • Intro to Computer Science or AP Computer Science
      • Intro to Engineering
      • Intro to Statistics or AP Statistics
      • Graphic Design or autoCAD1
      • Stagecraft I or Stagecraft II
  • What are the eligibility requirements in addition to coursework?

    In addition to the required coursework, the STEM Scholar program also requires:
    • Attendance at STEM-related Career Day presentation(s) OR shadowing a STEM professional
    • Active participation in a STEM-related co-curricular: at least 1 year in Robotics, SMART Team, Theatre crew, or HOSA Future Health Professionals
    • STEM-related research, either at DSHA or off-site is encouraged
    Other student expectations:
    • Commitment and formal application. Must apply each year to the STEM Scholar Program.
    • Participation in all required aspects of the program.
    • Meet all program deadlines. 
    • Submission of a personal essay detailing a real-life anecdote in which you demonstrated academic or technical perseverance will be written for senior year. 
    Parent/Guardian expectations:
    • Support student commitment and attendance.
    • Be open and responsive to feedback about your student.
    • Attend student-led showcases, when possible.
  • How does the application process work?

    1. Complete the online application by March 31st1 each year.
    2. Students eligible to apply: freshmen, sophomores and juniors.2

    1 Or school day closest to March 31st each year.
    2 Seniors would not be able to apply, given the intentionality of the program. It’s not just about taking certain classes. Juniors may apply with the understanding that the requirements could be harder to meet due to the shortened timeframe.
  • What classes are considered STEM classes at DSHA?

    Any mathematics or science course, Intro to Statistics, AP Statistics, AP Computer Science, Intro to Computer Science, Intro to Engineering, Stagecraft I and II, and AutoCAD. 
  • What careers are considered STEM careers?

What is the benefit of studying STEM?

Throughout the program, students have the freedom to think critically, creatively, and innovatively, as well as opportunities to fail and try again in safe environments.

Students will develop a variety of skills that are essential for success:
  • critical thinking and problem solving
  • creativity and innovation
  • communication, collaboration, and entrepreneurship, to name a few.

A recent study published by the American Society for Engineering Education identified several characteristics of high-quality STEM programs:

  1. The learning is motivating, engaging, and real-world.
  2. Students integrate and apply meaningful and important mathematics and science content.
  3. Teaching methods are inquiry-based and student-centered.
  4. Students engage in solving challenges using an engineering design process.
  5. Teamwork and communications are a major focus.

For more information, contact:

Connie Farrow
Specialized Studies Department Chair and Faculty & Mathematics Faculty
STEM Scholars Moderator

Heather Mansfield, PhD
Academic Dean

2019 Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Jonathon Gerlach

STEM is truly about moving forward, solving problems, learning, and pushing innovation to the next level.

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