Students spend a summery Saturday learning about science

POSTED: 05:55 PM EDT Jun 01, 2013    UPDATED: 09:07 PM EDT Jun 01, 2013 
Students spend a summery Saturday learning about science
Blacksburg, Va. - -

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority presented Saturday's Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics workshop at Virginia Tech.

“I really like the activities they do and how much I learned,” said student Ava Axtell.

Axtell is in the 6th grade and loves the hands on approach of the STEM program.

“We designed a two week, one day program that would expose those students to those kinds of fields and to professional in those fields,” said Program Coordinator Dr. Gena Chandler.

Students say the approach to learning is much different than what they have experienced in their normal day to day classes.

“You actually have more hands-on activities rather than have to, do something in a book,” said student Jeremiah Wilcox.

“I think it's vital to have that sort of hands-on experience. I'm actually a professor of English, and so largely one of the reasons I'm an English professor was that my mother was a librarian. So I had hands on very intimate exposure to reading,” said Chandler.

Students worked on lab experiments, including an experiment that required them to use their on DNA. Program directors want to reach out to students who seem to shy away from science and mathematics.

“Unfortunately children of unrepresented populations don't seem to gravitate toward this concept so our goal is to introduce them to this; spark an interest so that they will in turn will be ready to tackle this in high school,” said Program Coordinator,Rhonda Poindexter.

Some students say they wouldn't mind doing the workshop again.

“It was pretty exciting to see all the different steps, see it all in action and it was really fun,” said student Roshie Xing.

Another STEM program is being held on Saturday, June 8th, also at Virginia Tech.