The USA Science and Engineering Festival is looking to sign up 500-700 K-12 schools nationwide to their X-STEM school project this fall in anticipation of the largest STEM festival in the United States happening in Washington DC, April 24-27 2014.

Participating schools are invited to the first ever “Extreme (X)STEM symposium for elementary through high school students featuring interactive presentations by an exclusive group of visionaries who aim to empower and inspire kids about careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). These top STEM role models and industry leaders are sure to ignite your students’ curiosity through storytelling and live demonstrations.”

Students attendees can will experience engaging presentations, live demos and hands on workshops. The sessions will cover a wide array of subject areas including space exploration, storm chasing, oceanography, the science of social networks, the physics of superheroes, mathematical puzzles and so much more!

Place this incredibly cool and free 4 day fest directly in the middle of our nation’s capitol… what more motivation could be needed to plan a school trip to Washington DC for students. A trip that this festival, filled with countless exciting and unique STEM opportunities, can pretty much guarantee students will never forget. But, if a trip of that capacity doesn’t seem attainable, don’t let that stop any school from signing up! There are plenty of avenues to connect to the spirit of the fest throughout the year, with extensive curriculum and digital resources.

WHO: Who should sign up?

Someone from every school! It needs to be at least one student and one teacher, but seems to work better if you have a team of a few students. These students will get the support from the Science and Engineering Fest organization they need to be the school’s STEM ambassadors. What is a STEM ambassador? They are your student leaders who spread the word, initiate STEM activities for the student body and model the importance of studying these subjects for their peers, similar to student council- just with a STEM focus.

WHAT: What benefit do the students and school receive?

The benefit: “Ambassadors to the 3rd USA Science and Engineering Festival play a critical role in increasing awareness for the 2014 Festival through outreach efforts. In exchange for their efforts, Ambassadors are invited to attend the Festival’s special X-STEM event on April 24, 2014 at no cost, in addition to earning valuable community service credits for college applications and resumes.  X-STEM Schools get their own Festival webpage, preferential registration for the Nifty Fifty program, reduced School exhibitor fees, and preferred School Bus Grant applications.”

WHEN: When should you sign up?

As soon as possible! We wanted to get the word out now so teachers have time to register and invite students to participate starting in the fall- helping create a yearlong STEM theme for the school year.

If you are interested in registering your school as an X-STEM School, please click here

WHERE: Where do the events take place?

The USA Science and Engineering Fest takes place in Washington DC, overtaking the entire Walter E. Washington Convention Center for the four full days in April, but the STEM community events will happen all year long at your school.

If you can not attend the DC event, there will be opportunities to connect to the festival virtually along with other schools nationwide. The excitement the fest builds around STEM does not have to depend on physically attending the fest- the X STEM school project brings the information to your school.

WHY: Why should our school make the effort?

Congress just passed the legislation declaring the week of April 21st- 28th National STEM week because our students need to immerse themselves in this type of learning to be college and career ready in today’s world.

The USA Science & Engineering Festival brings together 750 incredible STEM organizations and universities and attracts over 40K students to participate in the largest STEM outreach the country has to offer. In addition to the fest, there are countless programs offered to schools, including bringing experts from the field into classrooms and schools at no cost. The site also offers full access for teachers and students to interactive and robust STEM resources.

The website www.usasciencefestival.com is overflowing with information and content – an incredible place to go to find everything needed to get schools connected, thinking STEM all year and ready to celebrate National STEM week this April!

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