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SENCER Leadership Fellow Alix Fink to Deliver SSI 2016 Plenary: From Ideals to Transformation: A SENCER Journey
Posted: Apr 6 2016
Dr. Alix Dowling Fink, Dean of the Cormier Honors College and Associate Professor of biology at Longwood University, will deliver the closing plenary address of the 2016 SENCER Summer Institute. In the address, she will reflect on the insights and lessons learned during her many years of participation in the SENCER national "community of transformation" and how that participation has shaped her her work on general education and the major at her institution, and catalyzed collaborations with informal education institutions.
SENCER Inspires New NSF Grant that Infuses Numeracy Across the Curriculum
Posted: Mar 17 2016
Dr. Frank Wang, a SENCER community member affiliated with the SENCER Center for Innovation – MidAtlantic region and professor of mathematics at LaGuardia Community College, was recently interviewed on the CASTpod podcast hosted by Harold Washington College in Chicago. On the podcast, Dr. Wang discussed the NICHE, or Numeracy Infusion Course for Higher Education, project funded by the National Science Foundation. NICHE was inspired by an intervention at LaGuardia that used SENCER to make math more accessible to students.
Adam Briggle, Author and Professor of Philosophy at University of North Texas, to Deliver SSI 2016 Plenary on Field Philosophy
Posted: Mar 8 2016
Dr. Adam Briggle, Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Texas, will deliver a plenary address on field philosophy at the 2016 SENCER Summer Institute. This year's Institute will be held at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois July 28 - August 1, 2016.
NCSCE Grants 15 Implementation Awards to Support Projects that Advance Education and Civic Engagement
Posted: Feb 9 2016
The National Center for Science & Civic Engagement is awarding fifteen SENCER Summer Institute 2015 Post-Institute Implementation Awards that promote education reform at the course, campus, and regional level, connect STEM to humanities disciplines such as music, literacy, and the classics, and engage students in content and the community. The awards sponsor projects that bridge the gaps between disciplines, restructure and revitalize standard laboratory courses, and extend the SENCER Ideals to K-12 educators and pre-service teachers. Project themes include sustainability, geosciences, public health, systems thinking, and media outreach. We are also pleased to note that this year's awarded projects are all led by women, a traditionally underrepresented population among STEM educators and professionals.
Do Now U Post Gets Recognized for Sparking National Conversation
Posted: Jan 26 2016
Do Now U post recognized by STATE The Magazine of Indiana State University for being part of a national conversation about the benefits and drawbacks of using natural and artificial turf athletic fields.
Kapi'olani Community College Recognized for Environmentally Friendly Culinary Practices
Posted: Jan 12 2016
Kapi'olani Community College's Culinary Arts program received the EPA Certificate of Achievement for increasing food waste diversion from landfills by 183% from 2013 – 2014 and preventing 9 metric tons of carbon equivalent. Techniques used were vermi-composting, forced-air composting, waste-oil to biodiesel generation, edible gardens, and aquaponic systems.
Hawaiʻi Diaries: Fall 2015 Strategic Planning Meetings for the SENCER Hawai'i Model State
Posted: Dec 8 2015
A team of SENCER representatives and practitioners returned in October and November to Hawaiʻi for six intensive days of meetings, consultations, and site visits to celebrate and continue supporting the SENCER Hawai'i state model. A large component of this visit was to bring the SENCER Hawai'i leadership team together for strategic planning meetings to continue building the state model and set milestones for the next three years. The Hawai'i SENCER state model has a strong emphasis on integrating the natural, social, and indigenous sciences with civic engagement, and supports statewide initiatives that address important issues, such as the University University and State Legislature State Legislature work in sustainability.
Webinar of the Week: Experiential Learning Opportunities in Ecology
Posted: Nov 10 2015
What if college laboratory courses reflected what students would actually experience in graduate school or as research scientists, and weren't just weekly exercises to questions that have already been answered? Visiting Assistant Professor of Biology at Middle Tennessee State University R. Drew Sieg partnered with the Murfreesboro Greenway System to give his Honors Ecology students research experience in a real topic of local concern.
Do Now U: Should We Install Fields of Artificial or Natural Turf?
Posted: Oct 27 2015
The Do Now U post, "Should We Install Fields of Artificial or Natural Turf?", created by Indiana State University students Hunter McCord, Andrew Medsker, and Brandon Madhaffey in professor Jim Speer's course, is now live on KQED's website. In their post, Hunter, Andrew, and Brandon explore the pros and cons of artificial turf. The popular synthetic grass could pose health risks, yet its use has a number of environmental benefits.
Do Now U: How Would You Balance Wildlife Conservation and Economic Growth?
Posted: Sep 30 2015
The first Do Now U post, "How Would You Balance Wildlife Conservation with Economic Growth?", created by George Mason University students, Joy Vander Clute, Claire Haftt, Andrea Freddy, and Sarmad Butt in professor Tom Wood's course, is now available on the KQED Education website. In their post, Jon, Claire, Andrea, and Sarmad use science media and resources to lay out the environmental conservation arguments for why the greater sage grouse, an "iconic species of the American West," should not have been removed from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service endangered species list, and the economic counter-points for why the bird species no longer needed the protective listing.
Science Slams – An Original Format to Increase Science Communication
Posted: Sep 30 2015
Sarah Kuppert, a recent graduate of George Mason University's Department of Environmental Science and Policy, won her school's Science Slam Grand Slam contest this past May. For the contest, Sarah had to communicate her research on Environmental DNA to a lay audience in a comedic, accessible way. By participating in the Slam, Sarah gained valuable experience in science communication. She urges other schools to host Science Slams, because in addition to letting students practice talking to a broad, non-scientifically literate audience, students who participate can win grants, add an impressive accomplishment to their resumes, and learn about the research conducted in other departments.
Victor Donnay Makes Mathematics Engaging, Interdisciplinary, and Relevant to the Real World
Posted: Sep 15 2015
During his plenary address at the 2015 SENCER Summer Institute, Victor Donnay, who is the William R. Kenan, Jr. Chair of Mathematics at Bryn Mawr College and an advisory board member for NCSCE's Engaging Mathematics initiative, helped attendees see the connection between mathematics and the real world, a goal he also has for his students.
New Award Recognizing Exemplary Regional Collaborations Honors Hawai'i Team
Posted: Aug 26 2015
We find ourselves inspired to create a new award program that acknowledges and honors exemplary multi-institutional, regional, or statewide work around compelling civic issues. The first recipient of this new award is a team from Hawai'i. While considering their work, it became clear that their actions and accomplishments seem best suited to be recognized by an honor that acknowledges quality of the inter-institutional collaborations and deep partnerships established to improve the quality of both formal and informal education.
SENCER Publishes Three New Model Courses in 2015
Posted: Jul 31 2015
SENCER's three newest models cover topics in the natural sciences, geology, and health, and exhibit a variety of learning strategies, such as project-based learning, active and collaborative learning, and media making. Our 2015 model authors include Kathleen M. Browne, Alison Olcott Marshall, Kesey S. Bitting, Rachel A. Bergstrom, and Marion Field Fass.
SENCER Publishes Three New Model Courses in 2015
Posted: Jul 31 2015
SENCER's three newest models cover topics in the natural sciences, geology, and health, and exhibit a variety of learning strategies, such as project-based learning, active and collaborative learning, and media making. Our 2015 model authors include Kathleen M. Browne, Alison Olcott Marshall, Kesey S. Bitting, Rachel A. Bergstrom, and Marion Field Fass.
SENCER-ISE Partnership, Fordham University and the Wildlife Conservation Society Featured on CAISE Perspectives Blog
Posted: Jul 21 2015
The SENCER-ISE partnership between Fordham University and the Wildlife Conservation Society is featured on the CAISE (Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education) Perspectives blog. The partners discuss their collaboration on Project TRUE: Teens Researching Urban Ecology, which uses a tiered-mentorship model to introduce New York City high school students to urban ecology and increase the rate of students pursuing STEM majors by facilitating collaborations with college mentors already in STEM disciplines.
SENCER Launches Webinars on Course Design, Interdisciplinary Education, Assessment, and More
Posted: Jul 7 2015
The SENCER community is rich with resources and faculty who effectively and successfully engage students in STEM courses using timely and relevant real-world problems. Our faculty are "natural treasures" who can advise on practical applications, interactive teaching strategies, and group projects that immerse and captivate a wide spectrum of students. Let us introduce you to some of these outstanding faculty through our SENCER webinars.
Hawaiʻi Diaries: University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo and Hawaiʻi Community College Site Visits
Posted: May 12 2015
During their time in Hawai'i, the visiting SENCER team members took a short flight over to the Big Island to visit the University of Hawai'i at Hilo and Hawai'i Community College. While there, the team spoke with students enrolled in experiential, hands-on marine science courses, and faculty and administrators looking to make course- and institution-level improvements.
RVCC Students Present Second Set of NJ Audubon Citizen Science Forest Health Workshops
Posted: May 12 2015
SENCER-ISE partners, the New Jersey Audubon and Raritan Valley Community College (RVCC), held their second round of Citizen Science Forest Health Workshops this April. During the workshops, NJ Audubon staff and RVCC students led Citizen Science volunteers in species identification and methodology training activities. The RVCC students and Citizen Scientists will be conducting bird and forest health surveys throughout the Piedmont area of the Raritan River watershed in May and June.
Hawaiʻi Diaries: Windward Community College Site Visit
Posted: Apr 28 2015
While at Windward Community College, the visiting SENCER team participated in discussions about civics and science education, toured campus rain gardens that protect surrounding water sources from runoff, spoke with students in a traditional Hawaiian methods of sustainability class, and experienced ancient Hawaiian culture at Waikalua Loko Iʻa', a 400-year-old fish pond.
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