Roanoke College - high school STEM opportunities

The Roanoke College Summer Academy provides a true college experience. Students will learn from Roanoke professors, take part in college prep workshops, and spend time with peer mentors. Students will also enjoy a real taste of college life - dining, social events, and athletics. This will give students a strong foundation to explore and to prepare for college.

The Summer Academy is for rising high school sophomores, upperclassmen and incoming college freshmen who are interested in having an immersive college experience, being academically challenged, and working towards a smooth transition into the academic and social life of college. Month-Long Research and Summer Immersion programs can also give you college credit.

Some STEM-related opportunities include:

Week-long courses:
Environmental Essentials: Clean Water - July 13 - 17, 2020

This camp will provide students with a better understanding of the science of water and how water impacts the environment. Students will explore green infrastructure, water quality, hydrology, stormwater and wastewater, and the future of water through classroom and hands-on experiences.

Who’s #1?: Sports and Math - July 13 - 17, 2020

In every sport, fans want to know – Who’s #1? Sports rankings are both fun and serious business, and math plays a crucial role in determining the ratings. Students will learn the basics of sports analytics and math for a variety of sports, and they will use this knowledge to analyze a sport chosen by the class.

Developmental Biology in Zebrafish (month-long opportunity)

Dr. Chris Lassiter, Biology

Under the direct supervision of a faculty mentor, students will have the opportunity to be part of a small research group investigating a question in a particular field of science. This course will introduce students to the scientific literature and encourage them to think scientifically. It will also engage them in scientific inquiry so that they can discover information about the topic not previously known. Topics will vary and are posted on the College's website as part of the application process. Limited positions are available in each topic area.

My lab studies how a single cell becomes a functioning animal through the process of embryogenesis. In particular we study how the sex hormones, estrogen and testosterone, affect embryonic development. Some projects study the absence of these hormones while others look at endocrine disrupting compounds from the environment and their effect on embryonic development. Recent projects have investigated the developing heart and jaw after embryos were exposed to environmental endocrine disruptors.

Month-long courses (June 29 - July 25, 2020)

Statistics and Food (10:50AM – 1:00PM)
Do you like food? Are you interested in issues concerning topics such as food industry, personal dietary choices, food marketing, and food shortages? In this course, you will learn how statistical methods are used to provide arguments for such issues and explanations for patterns that arise in the US today. And of course, food will be involved. You will read and reflect on articles involving food, use and create data sets concerning food, and even do a little bit of cooking!

An Edge to Science (8:30AM – 10:40AM)
The age of information has left us with few tools, and even less time, to follow-up, gather, and learn. In fact, much of this information is incomplete, primarily because the people who produce information are under the same tool and time problem as ourselves. This is particularly true in the astronomical sciences, where wonder, imagination, and awe are already easily fueled. In this age of hyper-information, how do we determine what is scientific truth and what is falsehood? Does science have an edge, and is an edge easily defined? What is meant by the concepts of evidence, law, and proof within the realm of science? At what point does science become pseudoscience, or even science fiction? We will examine a few concepts in astronomy (exoplanets, cosmology, and black holes), first introducing the established observations and science, while also inquiring about an edge to our current understanding. We will analyze data and observations in light of the concepts of extrapolation and interpolation, and we will recognize the influence of society on the process and presentation of science.