Florida Tech spearheads STEM poster program

The Florida Institute of Technology hopes to inspire students to seek out careers in science, technology, engineering and math and has started a poster outreach campaign to make that happen. Florida Tech’s Office of Enrollment Management is sponsoring a poster that has already sent 13,700 posters to teachers across the country that poses one very important query: What if there were no moon? The hypothetical question comes with many facets attached and employs class discussion, mathematical calculations and scientific thinking.

The poster is more than just a wall-hanging though. It features a lesson plan that outlines ways to use physics, math and geology to calculate the mass of the moon. Three faculty members developed the lesson plan that was then reviewed and refined by Master Teachers before it was sent out to teachers nationwide.

This isn’t the first time Florida Tech has reached out to teachers to help with in-classroom STEM initiatives. Other posters that have been created and distributed in previous years include The Power Of Math (based upon the science and math behind speedboat design); Gridiron Science (the math and physics of football); Science in Music (STEM career fields used in music); and Career Options in Sustainability.

Institutions of higher education that specialize in STEM learning, like Florida Tech, certainly recognize that its next generation of students will need to arrive on campus with a much larger knowledge set than even a few years ago. Careers in STEM fields represented 6.2 percent of the total U.S. workforce in May of 2014 and those numbers are predicted to grow steeply through 2020, according to the U.S, Department of Labor. That work begins long before a college career, though, and outreach like this poster program helps build the STEM foundation that will be needed as a college student and beyond.

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