This fall, Seton Hall University will shatter the boundaries of traditional education by launching a special research program that will provide high school students with a unique opportunity to participate in university-level research.
The University will team up with North Star Academy, Newark, New Jersey, to pair faculty members from the College of Arts and Sciences with senior students to create and run individual research projects. This program is part of the Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education initiative that works to prepare students to become national leaders who will maintain our country’s position atop scientific and technological research.
Seventy students from the North Star Academy Class of 2014 began their ground-breaking work at the end of October with their first visit to campus on October 31. Following a tour of the laboratories and a safety training session, students will work in small groups with a SHU faculty mentor to individually create and complete their own sub-category of a research topic. The projects will be completed with the help of a SHU faculty member and teachers from their high school, as well as student mentors from respective programs at the University.
Students will also have the special opportunity to present their finished research project via a poster or presentation at the 2014 Petersheim Academic Exposition in April. This exposition will give the students a chance to "Share, Honor, and Unite" with a rare opportunity to not only present and defend their work, but also talk with other researchers from the University.
"This is a wonderful opportunity for everyone involved," says Michael Zavada, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. "These students have earned the chance to do high-level research at a young age, which will hopefully lead to a successful career in the sciences. Applying classroom learning to real-world settings is one of the College's specialties, and we embrace the opportunity to partner with North Star in this capacity."
The STEM Education Coalition was created to provide students in grades K-12 more opportunities to advance their education in these fields in the hopes of bringing the country to a more competitive position worldwide in respective fields of research. The STEM Coalition’s website explains: "Members of the STEM Coalition believe that our nation must improve the way our students learn science, mathematics, technology and engineering and that the business, education, and STEM communities must work together to achieve this goal." Seton Hall's involvement will provide a direct influence on the community by providing a life changing, one-on-one opportunity for high school students to work with accomplished researchers of the faculty.