What is a Community STEM Event?
Have you been looking for a way to bring families and/or the general community together onto your campus but don’t have the time for planning or resources to make it happen? BioNetwork has the program for you!
A Community STEM Event is designed to engage STEM enthusiasts of all ages through inquiry-based hands-on activities. We have done all the legwork developing activities and will also provide ALL necessary materials (equipment and consumables) as well as training. All your organization will need to provide is the space and a few volunteers!
Why should my organization host this event?
The creation of a robust K-12 STEM pipeline has been widely identified as critical to economic development in North Carolina. The state has 810+ life science companies in more than half of our 100 counties employing 75,000+ people (data source: NCBiotech Company Directory, 2023). In 2021, there were approximately 6,500 NEW HIRES in Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing alone (data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021). This means we need a constant source of skilled, and highly capable talent. Building a strong bridge between education and careers requires collaboration among industry, schools,educators, and families.
Hosting a Community STEM Event showcases your facility and staff while engaging participants in a fun experiential environment. If you are a...
industry, you can highlight your products while introducing potential careers to students and job seeking adults alike.
community college, this type of event increases the comfort level of non-traditional and first-generation students visiting your campus to learn about programs offered. Children can also see your college as a potential educational pathway.
K-12 school, create a fun learning opportunity while also presenting career pathways to students.
Ultimately, an event like this can create a rapport with those in your community. Industries, community colleges, and schools are encouraged to collaborate and co-host an event.
How is the event run?
This event is designed to be run as stations, which enable participants to move between different hands-on STEM-focused activities freely. At each station, the participants engage with your volunteers who provide guidance and answer questions as needed. Volunteers will be provided instructions and training prior to the event. We also encourage hosts to invite additional members of their organization to provide stations with information on specific projects and programs.
If you've never hosted a STEM event before and aren't sure where to start, check out our Community STEM Event Checklist. Initially designed for our Community College partners, it is also applicable for other venues and organizations.
What activities are available?
Our Community STEM Events are fully customizable in that we have MANY activities for your group to choose from, making your event as big or small as needed! BioNetwork staff will help you in the selection process and can additionally answer any questions regarding planning and preparation.
Attention NC Community Colleges!
Are you interested in hosting a North Carolina Science Festival event in April but could use some help with planning and preparing fun hands-on activities?
Sign-up to receive our 2024 SciFest Host kit that will include 6 different activities with enough materials to engage 100 - 200 participants! This is a free service for our NC community colleges.
Requests for kits must be made by filling out this REQUEST FORM no later than December 1, 2023. Events must be held in April to be considered a Science Festival event. Please note that while BioNetwork supports the NC Science Festival, it is run by Morehead Planetarium + Science Center. For general questions about the Science Festival, please visit thier website: https://ncsciencefestival.org/
If you are a K-12 educator, there are initiatives just for you as well! You can visit https://ncsciencefestival.org/educators for more information on hosting an NC Science Festival event at your school.
Request a STEM Event
To request an event, please fill out our STEM Event Request Form.
Our outreach programs include classroom visits, faculty training workshops, and career fairs that help connect bioscience industry skills with K12 and community college STEM education.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Courtney Behrle, Senior Director of STEM Outreach