UCCI gears up for STEM conference

Francis French, author of several books on America’s space program and the director of education at the San Diego Air and Space Museum, will open the sixth annual STEM Carib Conference on Tuesday, Oct. 10, as the keynote speaker.

Mr. French will talk about the science and determination behind the Apollo 11 mission that landed the first man on the moon in 1969.

Seminars during the four-day conference at the University College of the Cayman Islands will go above and beyond traditional space technology, a press release states. One deals with the science behind teleportation and warp drives, but also includes such subjects as alternative energy sources and Cayman’s farm-to-table movement. More than 40 sessions are scheduled.

UCCI President Roy Bodden said in the press release that this year’s conference is the first to be held in cooperation with Harrisburg University of Science and Technology in Pennsylvania.

“There has been an obvious growing interest in this conference since its inception,” he said, “and this is anticipated to grow even more with our partnership with HU.” The conference is designed to generate interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics among primary and secondary students.

The final day of the conference will feature a family fun event from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. with more than 50 exhibits targeting primary school children.

Organizers are also hoping teachers will be inspired by seminars on astronomy, marine science, forensics, 3-D and bioprinting, and other science-related subjects.

Mr. Bodden said lunch and break-time discussions can also foster important ideas among educators attending the event.

Other highlights include displays by student winners of the Rotary Science Fair. The second-day keynote speech at 8 a.m. by Orane Barrett, an MIT alumnus and the chief executive of Kool Nerd Club, is titled “Benefits of Obtaining a Career of Passion.”

Mr. Barrett’s speech, along with Mr. French’s keynote address and Friday’s family fun event, are free and open to the public.

The conference will be held at UCCI’s Sir Vassel Johnson Hall. More information and a full schedule can be found at www.stem.ky.

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