News Release| IMPACT LA; Cal State L.A.

Media Advisory: IMPACT LA’s Eastside science and engineering outreach
Friday, May 25, 2012; 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Science and engineering facilities, Cal State L.A.

Cal State L.A. ‘STEMs’ interest
in 300 6th through 12th graders

IMPACT LA Open House offers workshops, research lab tours, popsicle-stick bridge challenge

Los Angeles, CA – Armed with popsicle sticks and curiosity, on Friday, May 25, approximately 300 students from underserved communities who attend three Los Angeles schools will explore the possibilities of becoming future scientists and engineers at Cal State L.A.’s IMPACT LA Open House.

After weeks of anticipation, these schoolchildren will finally have an opportunity to tour the research labs of CSULA graduate fellows. The fellows have been introducing them to research in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) for ten hours per week for an entire school year. The graduate fellows are paired up with local K-12 math or science teachers in order to bring “real world” science and engineering into the classrooms.

The program will also include workshops about college life and careers in STEM fields, and a hands-on popsicle-stick bridge design challenge. The aspiring scientists and engineers, who will be divided into 12 groups of 25 students, will come from Gabrielino High School, Hollenbeck Middle School, and Stevenson Middle School.

Funded by a five-year, $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the IMPACT LA program is designed to address public misconception of engineers and scientists, particularly among underserved communities. According to the National Academy of Engineers (NAE) report on Changing the Conversation: Messages for Improving Public Understanding of Engineering, “Hispanic boys in general believe that engineering has a positive effect on people’s everyday lives, but Hispanic girls believe that engineers are nerdy and boring.”

Reporters are welcome to attend the workshops and join the tours. Activities run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lunch (at 11:30 a.m.) will offer the best time for student interviews. 

Cal State L.A. is located at the intersection of the 10 and 710 freeway. (For campus map and directions, go to /univ/maps/).  

To make arrangements, call the Public Affairs office at Cal State L.A., 323-343-3050.

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Working for California since 1947: The 175-acre hilltop campus of California State University, Los Angeles is at the heart of a major metropolitan city, just five miles from Los Angeles’ civic and cultural center. More than 20,000 students and 220,000 alumni—with a wide variety of interests, ages and backgrounds—reflect the city’s dynamic mix of populations. Six Colleges offer nationally recognized science, arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and humanities programs, among others, led by an award-winning faculty. Cal State L.A. is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Jazz Orchestra and to the Honors College for high-achieving students. Programs that provide exciting enrichment opportunities to students and community include an NEH-supported humanities center; a NASA-funded center for space research; and a growing forensic science program, housed in the Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center. www.calstatela.edu