Before my first day of leadership training I was excited, nervous and didn't know what to expect, but by the time I got there and saw all the smiles I knew it was going to be a great day. My favorite session that day was the STEMazing race which made you think as a group and solve challenges of all sorts. Leadership training day one ended with work time which resulted in meeting the other CSOs from my high school and having a great science talk about our action plan.
When my second day of leadership training was starting I knew what to expect but I was still excited. I couldn't wait to meet more CSOs that I hadn't gotten to meet on day one and get to talk to more of the awesome advisers. My favorite session on day two was the STEM professional panel because I got to meet people from jobs around the area. We ended the day with our STEMonstration and had parents and professionals watch us present our projects.
Being a CSO in my opinion is having an impact with STEM in your community, whether it is a small or big impact just make your mark using STEM in your community. The reason I wanted to become a chief science officer is that I wanted to keep following my passion of science and spread the word about STEM and how many careers there are in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
By Jakob Beaver
Exploring New Frontiers with the GLBR Chief Science Officers!
On Tuesday, January 21st, fifty of our Great Lakes Bay Region Chief Science Officers and their advisors attended the Winter Cabinet Meeting held at Saginaw Valley State University. While on campus, CSOs learned about various opportunities for involvement in the Great Lakes Bay Region, networked with other CSOs and SVSU students and staff, and discovered how to “get off their island” from Dr. Ruth Jones, NASA Branch Chief at the Marshall Space Flight Center.
The day began with a discussion centered on “Characteristics of Great Leaders” and a video highlighting the importance of “soft skills.” Lori Flippin, STEM Initiative Leader at the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance, extended an opportunity for CSOs to interact with local community leaders through the GLBR Institute for Leaders program. Our Chief Science Officers will be conducting phone interviews with local community leaders; this experience will provide insight into the CSO program, STEM education, and the K-12 sector, while also providing the CSOs with a valuable networking experience. CSO Alumna Emily Jaremba illustrated how her journey through the CSO program inspired and prepared her to major in Biochemistry at SVSU and to become an intern with the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance STEM Ecosystem. As part of her work at the Alliance, Emily is creating the GLBR CSO Alumni group and encouraged the current CSOs to spread the word! Both of our presenters showed the CSOs that with dedication and determination, they can continue their passion for STEM for years to come.
Our CSOs were also able to connect with different departments at SVSU including Admissions, Career Services, and Entrepreneurship, as well as students from the Chemistry Department and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Organization. Chief Science Officers learned how they can start preparing for their future now, discussed STEM career trends, and discovered what scientific research entails at the undergraduate level.
Last, but certainly not least, we had the incredible privilege of hosting Dr. Ruth Jones, NASA Branch Chief at the Industrial Safety Branch of the Marshall Space Flight Center, located in Huntsville, Alabama. She shared her academic journey, love of physics, and how her determination to be the best she could be resulted in her current position. Her drive to overcome adversity certainly paid off; Dr. Jones was the first female to graduate with a bachelor's degree in physics from the University of Arkansas, and the second African American woman to earn a PhD in physics in the state of Alabama. She spoke with our CSOs about the importance of “getting off of their island” and being successful in life; in order to do that, they need to have a map (plan), rubber band (flexibility), compass (mentors), food (education), and a watch (timeline). A favorite quote from Dr. Jones is “Your Attitude Determines Your Altitude.” She truly inspired our CSOs that no matter what career they eventually pursue, they must strive to be the best in that field. Our students also inspired Dr. Jones as they shared their passion for STEM education and their CSO action plans for the year. In the words of Dr. Jones, “If this is the future of our country, it looks very bright!”
Adrianne Cole, Director of STEM@SVSU
January 27, 2020