Hands-on activities are a staple at the annual STEM fair. Held at the high school, it is open to families and children of all ages. PHOTOS COURTESY OF IRIS CAMPBELL/SAN MARCOS CISD
The popular Geek Bus returns to the STEM Fair this year.
San Marcos High School is again the scene of the STEM Fair.
Students try their luck at computer simulations.
Children of all ages find experiments that interest them.
A world of career possibilities
An educational initiative at the forefront of preparing students for valued careers will take place at San Marcos High School Feb. 11.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. that day, SMHS will host its annual STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fair. Now in its fourth year, the fair brings together San Marcos’ school district and chamber of commerce to showcase activities and demonstrations.
This year is expected to be the largest to date.
STEM committee chairman Eduardo Rios notes that the event will have, “More speakers, another rocket launch, the return of the Geek Bus and a special exhibit by the Circuit of the Americas,” adding that “These are just the outdoor exhibitors.”
Inside the San Marcos High School Cafeteria, the fair will feature more than 50 tables of exhibitors with hands-on activities and demonstrations designed to show that STEM education can be fun.
This year Microsoft returns and will have ten XBOX ONE units showcasing video game development as well as a chance to get your hands on their latest hardware offering The Surface Studio. KLRU will be exhibiting information on educational programming (PBSKids) and offering guidance to parents. Other exhibitors include Alligator Dental, the General Motors Innovation Center, CFAN, Central Texas Medical Center and the city of San Marcos, among others.
In addition to the main exhibitors, there will be a special display of San Marcos CISD student science fair projects. “This is a chance to come and support our future San Marcos scientists,” Rios said.
The speaker line-up for 2017 includes (each runs 30 minutes):
• 10:30 a.m. - Dr. Ben Martin of Texas State University, FUNdamental Science (Room 801)
• 11 a.m. - Meteorologist Chikage Windler of KEYE-TV (Library)
• 11:30 a.m. - Mad Science, Imaginative Learning (Room 11)
• 12 p.m. - Dr. Shetay Ashford, presenting HERstories, successful stories of women in STEM – (Library)
• 12:30 p.m. - Headstart of Community Action – (Room 801)
• 12:30 p.m. -CFAN Rocket Launch (Outside in the front of the High School)
• 1 p.m. - Ben Kramer of PBS-Austin presenting PBSKids programs (Room 11)
New this year is the availability of food booths outside in front of the high school, with a variety of food items available for purchase to support fundraising for various SMCISD school clubs.
The fair will continue to offer door prizes to those who complete their PASSPORTS with stamps from the various exhibitors.
Planning for the route goes on all year. Members of the San Marcos TEM Fair Committee are
Alligator Dental, (Albert Einstein Sponsorship Level);
Texas Oncology, (Alexander Bell Sponsorship Level);Pollo Tropical, (Alexander Bell Sponsorship Level); city of San Marcos, (Alexander Bell Sponsorship Level); city of San Marcos Utility Department, (Marie Curie Sponsorship Level); American Rosie the Riveter Association, (Alfred Noble Sponsorship Level); Sage Capital Bank, (Alfred Noble Sponsorship Level); and Cuauhtemoc Hall, (Special Contributor Level).