Make a Difference: Become an E-STEM Mentor!

by Jenna Farrell, Program Director, Engage in STEM (E-STEM) 

Are you an undergraduate student majoring in a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) major? Do you have a passion for helping younger students understand all of the possibilities that a STEM major can offer them? If so, consider becoming an Engage in STEM (E-STEM) mentor!

The Engage in STEM (E-STEM) program has been created to encourage and support middle and high school students in authentic scientific inquiry in a mentored after-school setting. E-STEM is designed to increase students’ interest in STEM learning activities and to expose them to the breadth of STEM career opportunities, while they learn about the value of STEM in society.

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This year, E-STEM will be present in three school districts – the Holyoke Public Schools, the Quaboag Regional School District, and the East Boston Public Schools. Undergraduate students interested in becoming a mentor may choose any one of the districts, and the MAS staff and lead mentors can help you choose the best district for you.

IMG_3374Last year, E-STEM students traveled to the Regional Science Fair at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and the Massachusetts Middle School State Science & Engineering Fair at Worcester Technical High School, with one student placing third in the state! Students also traveled to UMass Amherst and participated in hands-on demonstrations in real science labs with their mentors. This is a great way to learn more about the scientific research happening across the state and perhaps learn more about your own passions as well!

Would you like the opportunity to have a mentor, too? As an E-STEM mentor, you’ll be paired with a graduate student working in your area of interest who can help you understand how to chart your own path towards your career goals.

Did you know you could earn credit for being a mentor? If you attend any of the Five Colleges (UMass Amherst, Hampshire College, Amherst College, Smith College, and Mount Holyoke College) you are eligible to register for an internship course offered by the MAS in partnership with UMass Amherst. If you do not attend any of these colleges/universities but are still interested in earning credit, other opportunities may be available as well.

Here are some testimonials about E-STEM:

“Football was my life – until I sustained a serious concussion and became unable to play. I needed something to make me feel good again. I have a passion for science, so I chose to sign up to serve as a mentor for Engage in STEM, and mentoring has changed my life! I love helping younger students understand science and think about themselves as scientists one day.” ~Steven Ho, Everett Public Schools Mentor

“I quickly began to look forward to seeing my students, and learned so much about them. One of my students speaks English as a second language, and it was so rewarding to watch her progress through her project. I can’t wait to work with her again this year!” ~Rachel, Quaboag Regional School District Mentor

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If this sounds like an opportunity you’re interested in, we are still accepting mentors for this year’s program. Please contact the Program Director, Jenna Farrell, using the contact form below to learn about how you can start making a difference in the lives of students!

 

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