ISU Headlines

ISU to host TRiO workshops for science, technology, engineering and math

Posted February 20, 2009

Idaho State University’s TRiO programs will host a day of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) workshops at ISU on Feb. 20 as part of TRiO Day celebrations.

About 150 prep students participating in the TRiO program from the Magic Valley, throughout southeast Idaho and the Idaho Falls area will visit campus to participate in the workshops.

The STEM workshop will allow TRiO students to explore educational and career options in the science and math fields. It is also an opportunity for potential students to experience the campus of Idaho State University.

“The purpose of the workshops is to promote careers in science, technology and math to low-income, first-generation students,” said Mike Echanis, interim director of TRiO Services. “These students are under represented in these fields, and there are shortages in these areas.”

Currently, for every 10,000 low-income ninth graders who would be served by TRiO, only 30 or .03 percent, will earn degrees in STEM fields, Echanis noted. In contrast, for every 10,000 high-income ninth graders, 235 will earn STEM degrees.

Attendees will have the option of attending two demonstrations in the following six specialties:

•    electronic systems technology and laser electro optics technology

•    physical and occupational therapy

•    chemistry

•    biomedical and pharmaceutical research

•    engineering

•    mathematics

Participants will be introduced to the day’s activities at 9:30 a.m. in the Pond Student Union Bengal Theater, then the STEM demonstrations will occur at various locations on campus 10-11 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1:45-2:45 p.m. Campus tours, leaving from the Pond Student Union theatre entrance will be held at 3 p.m.

In addition, the annual ISU TRiO Day luncheon will be held 12:45-1:30 p.m. in the Pond Student Union Wood River Room. Luncheon speakers will address “Opportunities at ISU.”

The TRiO programs include Upward Bound (UB), Educational Talent Search (ETS) and Student Support Services (SSS). Upward Bound and Educational Talent Search are precollege outreach programs serving junior high, middle school and high school students by helping them stay on track to graduate, and then to successfully apply and be admitted to postsecondary schools. Student Support Services works with postsecondary students to help them earn a degree and enroll in graduate programs.

During the last 42 years of service at ISU, TRiO programs have served thousands of low-income, first generation students, and students with disabilities in the ten southeastern counties of Idaho.

Without the program’s services many program participants would not achieve their educational goals of high school graduation and entering a post-secondary program, Echanis said.

For more information, contact Mike Echanis at 282-3244 or echamike@isu.edu.