STEM West: New Opportunities January 29, 2020

For Those Interested

in STEM Education! 


Volunteer for this year’s

North Carolina Science and Engineering Fair

Looking for a way to give back to the STEM community, inspiring NC’s next generation of scientists and engineers? 

The NC Science Fair Foundation (NCSFF) proudly hosts the NC Science and Engineering Fair each spring with the help of hundreds of volunteers like you. The success of each season depends largely on the contributions of people from all over the state and many walks of life. For this year’s competition we are happy to offer volunteer opportunities that are asynchronous (flexible work time, happening prior to the fair dates) and synchronous (day of fair live event staff & judges). With a variety of opportunities and a virtual format, there is a role for everyone, with or without a STEM background and regardless of location. Learn more about the myriad options available to support these young researchers and sign up on the NCSEF website here. We look forward to working alongside you!”

Modeling Biology and Chemistry Workshops in Western North Carolina

Are you a High School Biology or Chemistry teacher who is interested in teaching with a more effective inquiry approach to science instruction? Come learn about Modeling Instruction – an approach to teaching where emphasis is placed on the use of conceptual models to teach content and developing skills in fostering scientific discourse. 

With the support of an NSF research grant, The Science House will be offering summer professional development in Modeling Biology and Modeling Chemistry during the summers of 2022 and 2023. Teachers will take part in intensive summer institutes and receive follow up support during the subsequent academic years. Stipends will be offered for teachers’ participation in the professional development and research activities. These courses will be offered in western North Carolina over the next two years. Participants are responsible for their own travel. Grant partner districts have priority for selection, though all interested teachers are encouraged to apply.

To learn more about this opportunity, sign-up for our online Modeling Q&A session scheduled with
Zoom on Thursday, February 3rd, from 7-8 PM.

Register today at

Invitation: Come by and check out the Catawba County Schools’ Sumo Fest!

(for those interesting in possibly starting their own)

We invite you to our seventh annual CCS Sumo Fest.  This year, we will compete on Saturday, March 26, 2022, in the Maiden High School gymnasium. 

Our tentative schedule is:

  • Doors Open: 8:00 AM
  • Check in and Inspections: 8:15 – 9:00 AM
  • Welcome: 9:15AM
  • Round Robin Begins: 9:30AM
  • Lunch Break: 11:30AM – 12:30PM
  • Elimination Matches Begin: 12:30PM
  • Final Four Matches: 2PM
  • Awards: 2:15PM

We will follow the Appalachian State University competition rules which can be found at Sumo Bot rules

The Sumo-Bot itself must be constructed with unmodified LEGO construction components.  They must also run completely autonomously.

Smoky Mountains STEM Collaborative


February Newsletter

Weekly Updates for New Learning Opportunities for Educators & Youth

Check out the new website with a few new features:

  1. Initiatives linked with articles
  2. Weekly posts for students and teacher STEM learning opportunities
  3. New Resource Links: Virtual Field trips/STEM Career videos and resources
  4. Donations can now be made online

About STEM West

STEM West ( is a STEM education non-profit located in Hickory, NC that serves 6 counties and 8 LEAs across the Western North Carolina Region. STEM West’s mission is to advocate and support the alignment of educational and occupational objectives through the regional workforce and community partnerships. STEM West’s passion for its students, workforce, and community helps it promote equitable STEM access for ALL.




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