Tag Archives: STEM

Women in Science and Engineering Conference

“Sustainability: Preparing for the Long Haul” is the theme of Texas State’s fourth annual Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) Conference November 21 and 22.

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This event provides opportunities for students studying for careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields to gain insights into successful career practices from experienced female professionals and educators. Faculty and students interested in STEM education will benefit from workshops and posters highlighting both best practices in encouraging students to excel in the STEM disciplines and STEM research ongoing at Texas State.

The conference will feature a career panel of industry professionals and a workshop for current and future educators. Undergraduate and graduate students can participate in the research poster competition, meet and network, and apply for scholarships awarded by event sponsors.

A special program will give high school students the opportunity to meet Texas State women in STEM and to explore opportunities to further their education.

“We will have students from four high schools participating in the conference: San Marcos High, Canyon Lake High, John Paul II Catholic High School and Palacios High School,” says Dr. Dana M. Garcia, a professor in Texas State’s Department of Biology and chair of the conference planning committee.

For alumnae, the conference provides opportunities to return to campus and learn how scientists and engineers at their alma mater are advancing science and engineering practice.

For faculty and research scientists, the WISE Conference is an outstanding opportunity to learn what STEM faculty around campus are doing, identify potential collaborators, and learn about the rich scientific resources right here at Texas State.  This year’s conference will feature faculty research presentations from Texas State’s own College of Science and Engineering faculty and presentations from female engineers from Halliburton, ExxonMobil and IBM.

WISE is now accepting conference registrations, abstract submissions for the poster session and applications for tuition scholarships valued at $1,000 each. There is a pre-conference event with dinner and workshops designed to provide networking opportunities and prepare students for Friday’s conference. The pre-conference is space-limited, so register early to reserve your spot.

To register and see the conference schedule, go to wise.cose.txstate.edu

Alumni: Krystle Moore

Fearless learner: Asking questions opened doors to scholarships, mentors, career path for biology grad

studio portrait of Krystle Moore

Krystle Moore ’13

By Billi London-Gray

It’s hard to believe brilliant people who tell you, “Don’t be afraid to feel dumb.” But these words are the motto of Krystle Moore, who recently completed her bachelor’s degree in biology at Texas State University. Her brave, inquisitive attitude has led her to one great opportunity after another. Continue reading

Happenings: Summer Camps

Wide-eyed. Wild. Wonderful.
It’s summer camp at Texas State!

Students testing D.O. in lab

Attendees test water samples in a university laboratory — one of the many hands-on science activities offered by the Aquatic Sciences Adventure Camp.

By Billi London-Gray

The bustle of San Marcos slows as the temperatures rise and thousands of Texas State University students leave the city for their hometowns. But the bustle on campus continues as hundreds of new students — from toddlers to high schoolers — flock to Texas State for summer camps.

Creativity flows at Texas State summer camps, just as pure water flows from the San Marcos springs. Inquisitive young minds gather on campus each summer to explore their passions and discover new ones with the guidance of university faculty and staff. Texas State’s unique Aquatic Sciences Adventure Camp exemplifies this experience. Continue reading

Spotlight: Flowing Waters

Partnership program brings Texas State students into local classrooms

By Mary Kincy

Flowing Waters students

Students examine slides under microscopes as part of a Flowing Waters exercise.

A partnership between Texas State and the San Marcos Consolidated Independent School District is changing the way middle- and high-school students in San Marcos schools understand science — and just in the nick of time.

Studies show students in the U.S. are lagging in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and Flowing Waters is a hands-on program designed to engage students in the sciences, offering avenues of approach that promote interest and inspiration.

Each year, Flowing Waters places eight Texas State doctoral students in San Marcos schools, where these “resident scientists” encourage students to ask and answer their own questions using the scientific method. Continue reading

Spotlight: Amanda Duran

Decoding diseases drives
first-generation grad to doctorate

Amanda Duran

By Billi London-Gray

Biochemist. Microbiologist. Scholar. First-generation college student. However you describe her, Amanda Duran exemplifies how hard work and a strong support system can put a student’s highest ambitions within reach.

“Amanda is an excellent student and an outstanding role model for women pursuing careers in science and engineering,” says Susan Romanella, director of the Houston-Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Scholars Program (H-LSAMP) in Texas State University’s College of Science. “Her success also stands as a testament to the stellar education and experiences she has pursued while at Texas State.”

Duran, a brand-new graduate of Texas State, majored in biochemistry with a minor in psychology. And she says she came to San Marcos knowing exactly what she wanted. Continue reading

Happenings: STEaMbowl

College of Science announces first annual STEaMbowl competition

Knowledge is power. Every college student believes this axiom of education. But this month, for five Texas State students, knowledge will become prize money, too.

The Texas State University College of Science will hold its first STEaMbowl competition Thursday, April 21, from 6-9 p.m. in Centennial Hall, room G01. Similar in style to “Jeopardy,” STEaMbowl is a single-elimination quiz competition. The winning team will receive $250. Continue reading

Happenings: Austin Science and Engineering Festival

Texas State students lure future engineers with new technology

Jesse Clark tests Jonathan Park's eye tracker, which will be on display at the festival.

By Billi London-Gray

Texas State University’s Ingram School of Engineering is participating in the first-ever Austin Science and Engineering Festival this weekend at the Austin Convention Center. The Society of Mexican American Engineers and Scientists will host the festival in conjunction with the USA Science and Engineering Festival, which organizes concurrent events throughout the country.

The family-oriented festival aims to inspire young people to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) studies and careers.  The event lets Texas State reach out to potential students and raise awareness of exciting opportunities for undergraduates in the Ingram School of Engineering.
Texas State representatives, including engineering professor Dr. Larry Larson and student Jonathan Park, will speak with attendees about the university’s technology programs.

“We believe our strengths are our hands-on approach to engineering and our industrial-commercial mindset and approach,” says Larson in describing the Ingram School of Engineering. “Almost all of our classes have attached labs, where the students get to actually do what they have been lectured about. Also, our undergraduate involvement in research provides a great chance to actually participate, as an undergraduate, in real work.”

Park will be demonstrating one of his undergraduate technology projects at the festival. For his human computer interaction class this semester, he created an eye tracker, which he will ask festival visitors to test. The gadget allows users to operate a computer without moving a mouse or other input device and without vocal recognition software.

“The device uses a $20 web camera, some software developed by ITU-Copenhagen and a handful of electronic components. It allows the user to move the computer mouse with his eye,” Park says. “Currently systems that do this reliably can be quite expensive, several thousand dollars. The goal of research with this interface is to make systems that work reliably with relatively inexpensive components.”

As Park demonstrates the eye tracker at the festival, he will gather performance information to use as a base line for further improvements of the ITU-Copenhagen software. His demonstration at the Texas State exhibit will be one of over 100 science and engineering displays at the festival.

Other activities and exhibits at the festival will explore cinema special effects, alternative energy technology, and using technology like the Nintendo Wii and the iPhone to conduct scientific experiments and simulations. Visitors will also be able to “travel” with a virtual reality helmet, compete in solar car races and build candy catapults.

“The great thing about the festival is that it reaches the community as a whole,” festival director Enrique Gomez said in a press release. “Science and technology are indispensable tools for empowering people and should be supported with efforts that promote curiosity toward science and the intelligent use of technology.”

All activities will be held at the Austin Convention Center from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 23 and 24. Admission is free and open to all ages. For a complete schedule of events, visit the event website, www.austinsciencefestival.org.