The first-ever Loudoun County STEM Day was a resounding success. On October 17, the Loudoun Campus, NOVA’s SySTEMic Solutions, Loudoun County Public Schools and the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce joined forces to sponsor the event, drawing hundreds of students, parents, educators and even U.S. Representative Barbara Comstock (VA-10).
This is the second year Loudoun Campus hosted the free day-long STEM-based event but the first time all four institutions came together to feature STEM learning.
The day’s silver corporate sponsor was Computer Troubleshooters, based in Sterling, Virginia. By the end of the day, pre-registered participants numbered 1,184 and walk-in registrations were 392, for a guest total of 1,576.
Volunteers for the day numbered 50 students, staff and community members, including Loudoun Provost Julie Leidig who answered questions, guided participants and welcomed Comstock and Loudoun County Board of Supervisors Chairman Scott York, among others.
All areas of STEM were represented. Attendees of all ages and offices learned and maneuvered robots on land, water, and in the air; experimented in NOVA chemistry, physics, biology, and veterinary technology labs; fed crickets to carnivorous plants and potted plants to take home; created their own demos with voice or instruments in the professional recording studio; and joined in dozens of other creative opportunities for learning in the STEM fields.
Many programs were present with information tables, including NOVA, SySTEMic Solutions, Pathway to the Baccalaureate, Extended Learning Institute (ELI), GIS Program, George Mason University and NOVA IT departments, George Mason University Game & Technology Academy, and the George Washington University.
Special thanks to the individuals at NOVA who made this event happen including Loudoun Campus’ Laura Siko (STEM Day chairwoman and chief organizer), Andrew Furr, Tatyana Schum, Leidig, Dr. Barb Canfield, Laura Jacyna, Lauren Arevalo, Dr. Georgeana Stratton, Francesca Viale, Ramani Kharidehal, Paula Rodgers, Malvika Talwar, Eddie Perry, David Scheid, Susan Dickson, Steve Darrow, Bill Bour, Will Straight, Tom Gutnick, Carolyn Davis, Dr. Tregel Cockburn, Dr. Regina Wilson, David Brager, Kristyn Moskey, Sanjay Mishra, Krishna Pendyala, Khanh Dinh, John Bruno, Mitra Jahangeri, the NOVA Math Club, and SySTEMIC Solutions’ Josh Labrie and Bryce Lenon.