Oklahoma NSF EPSCoR Grant Spotlight Video: CareerTech STEM Partnership

Oklahoma NSF EPSCoR has partnered with the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education to open four new Gateway to Technology (GTT) schools in rural Oklahoma over four years, starting in 2014. The new EPSCoR GTT sites are located in rural areas of the state with high minority, low-income, and first-generation college student populations.  

The first two schools to receive the EPSCoR GTT grants are Pansy Kidd Middle School, located in Poteau, Oklahoma, and Henryetta Middle School in Henryetta, Oklahoma. (Click the video on the right to learn more about the Henryetta program.)

These new schools would not have access to the GTT program without EPSCoR grant funding, according to Sara Wright, STEM state program administrator for the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education.  

GTT features a project-based curriculum designed to challenge and engage the natural curiosity and imagination of middle school students. The curriculum is provided through the nationally recognized Project Lead the Way program. 
Students in the program envision, design and test their ideas with the same advanced modeling software used by companies like Lockheed Martin, Intel and Sprint. They study mechanical and computer control systems, such as robotics and animation. Students also explore the importance of energy, including innovative ways to reduce, conserve and produce power using solar, thermal and wind alternatives.
Beginning in 2014, the Oklahoma GTT program will include new environment and climatology units that are being made possible through the Oklahoma NSF EPSCoR grant award.  Teachers and students statewide will have access to hands-on science activities related to topics such as weather, rainfall, and global water issues.

The Oklahoma Gateway to Technology program serves more than 4,700 students each year, including the newly established EPSCoR-grant schools.

Videos provided by Oklahoma State University Research Communications and OState TV