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Dow Collaborates with Mind Trekkers and Delta College for 6th Annual STEM Festival

October 3, 2018

Middle school students at STEM FestWalking on water, standing inside a bubble, or playing a piano with bananas for keys are just some of the marvels of science that will be seen at the 6th annual Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival powered by the nationally-known Mind Trekkers of Michigan Technological University.

The Dow Chemical Company and Delta College are teaming up again with Mind Trekkers to present the STEM Festival at Delta College on October 12 - 13, 2018. New this year – the event will be open to the public on Friday evening, October 12, from 6 - 9pm and Saturday, October 13, from 11am - 2pm. 

Mind Trekkers – a traveling, hands-on science and engineering show from Michigan Technological University’s Center for Pre-College Outreach, and Delta College faculty, staff and volunteers are working with about 30 STEM partners to bring 150-plus science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities to the free festival. Mind Trekkers has gained national acclaim for its high-energy demos of the science behind what looks like magic, like turning a few drops of liquid into huge foam gnomes or shooting ping-pong balls through a soda can. Students will also have opportunities to explore STEM careers in the area as they meet with the many STEM professionals who are also participating in the event. 

"Our goal is to create a spark and create an environment of excitement and interest in science and technology," says Cody Kangas, director of the Center for Pre-College Outreach at Michigan Tech. 

This will be the 6th straight year Mind Trekkers has traveled to Delta College for a STEM festival. The group travels throughout the United States to schools, festivals and expos to the delight of hundreds of thousands of students, parents and teachers. Delta College Professor of Biology, Cindy Drake, has been instrumental in helping coordinate the Mind Trekkers visits to Delta College. 

"STEM Festivals are an excellent opportunity for families to explore the worlds of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in an engaging, exciting and informal environment. Students of all ages can experience the "wow" of STEM through fun hands-on activities while also learning more about the many profitable STEM careers available in our area," says Drake. "Statistics show that fewer students are continuing to study STEM fields past middle school, while at the same time STEM careers are growing, causing a deficit of skilled workers in these areas. This event is an opportunity for students to re-engage in fields that have excellent forecasts for future growth and to see how much fun they can have while learning. They will have opportunities to see how STEM is a part of the Arts as well." 

As in the past years, the first day of the festival will involve middle school students during morning and afternoon sessions. Close to 3,200 middle school students and chaperones are registered to attend Friday. However, new this year, a Friday evening session, from 6 – 9pm, will be open to the public. On Saturday, the Festival is open to the public from 11am – 2pm.

The Dow Chemical Company is once again the premier sponsor for the STEM Festival. Dow’s educational mission is to build the workforce of tomorrow by supporting educational leaders, motivating student achievement, developing careers, and collaborating with communities to transform education into a driver for innovation, manufacturing, and economic prosperity. 

"Events like the STEM Festival provide a perfect opportunity to ignite interest for students in STEM fields, particularly chemistry, engineering and manufacturing, while also fostering participation through hands on experiences," said Reiner Roghmann, vice president of Operations, Canada and USA North and site director for Michigan Operations. "We support events like this to create an appreciation for science and enhance preparedness in technical fields that ultimately develops into great careers for these bright minds."

Nexteer Automotive, Hemlock Semiconductor and the Michigan Department of Transportation are also proud sponsors of this year’s festival.

For more information, contact Cody Kangas, director of the Center for Pre-College Outreach, at 906-487-2219 or ckangas@mtu.edu.

Highlights from last year's event

  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival
  • 2017 Dow Great Lakes Bay STEM Festival