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AIM High Science and Technology Program

The College of Education and its partners are celebrating the smashing success of this summer's Rowan University AIM High Science and Technology Program. During the month of July, 61 high school students from southern New Jersey converged to explore firsthand the everyday work of forensic scientists, computer scientists, biologists, and engineers while developing as scholar leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

The Aim High Program is a comprehensive, developmental summer program designed to assist high school students who are first-generation and/or low-SES students in pursuing STEM majors and careers. The program addresses three core developmental areas: Personal/Social, Career, and Academic. Through courses in science and technology, service learning, leadership development, group counseling, workshops/ guest speakers, and various on and off-campus activities students were able to develop a satisfaction and understanding of life on campus, as well as, set personal and career/ college goals.

This year, due to the success of Senior Aim High, Dr. Eric Milou (College of Science and Mathematics) and Dr. Jill Perry (College of Education) were able to secure funding from an AT&T Foundation Grant to program expanded in scope and service to include an additional day-only program to expose 21 first-generation rising high school juniors to possible STEM careers and majors through computer science. Leading the Junior Aim High curricula development was Dr. Perry (College of Education) in collaboration with Dr. Jennifer Kay (College of Science and Mathematics). Junior Aim High is in its first year of implementation. The program is designed for 22 rising junior high school students from. The program is a joint venture between the College of Science and Mathematics, and the College of Education and is funded by the AT&T Foundation ($50,000).

(Principal Investigators: Eric Milou, Kara Ieva, and Jill Perry)

For 40 rising high school seniors from Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, and Salem counties, Rowan was home for the 4-week residential Senior Aim High Program. From Sunday through Friday each week, they lived in campus dorms, took a college biology course, and experienced life as college students in a carefully structured and incredibly supportive environment that included leadership development, personal development, and college and career planning experiences. Meanwhile, the 21 rising juniors from Gloucester and Camden Counties in the Junior Aim High Program were engaged in leadership personal development, and college and career planning while learning computational thinking through programming LEGO robots and creating interactive presentations and games in Scratch.

What made all of this possible is our extensive collaborative network including Rowan at Camden, 27 high schools in 7 southern New Jersey counties, the Colleges of Education, Science & Mathematics, and Engineering, Student Life, the Office of Student Service Learning and Volunteerism, University of West Florida, the Rowan University Rec Center, and the AT&T Foundation.

Coordinated by the College of Education's Dr. Kara Ieva, the program began in 2011 with the Senior Aim High Program as a joint venture among the College of Education and Rowan's Camden Campus that is funded by the Commission of Higher Education through a College Access Grant (total award amount since 2011: $467,620; Principal Investigators: Kara Ieva, Donavan McCargo, and Winona Wigfall). The program has been highly effective in helping students to secure college enrollment (99% for the first two years of the program), develop leadership, study, technology, and personal skills, and increase interest in careers in STEM fields.

ROWAN AIM HIGH CONTACT INFORMATION:

Dr. Kara Ieva, Project Coordinator: aimhigh@rowan.edu; 856-256-4500 (Ext. 3827)