Project ENGAGES consists of three program components:
1. Science Outreach Initiative. Through direct interactions with the partner high schools, Georgia Tech researchers interact with the science classes during the school year so as to provide a more in-depth exposure to science. This is accomplished through the following approaches:
- Providing hands-on learning opportunities for the students in Georgia Tech laboratories.
- Using a high bandwidth video conferencing capability, high school science classes are connected with a Georgia Tech laboratory so that the students can be exposed to new areas of science and engineering, and participate in experiments using high-tech scientific equipment.
- Establishing a science club with the two of the high schools in partnership with Georgia Tech to reach out to the wide group of students having an interest in science, engineering, and technology. This science club includes ninth and tenth graders from the two high schools and seventh and eighth graders from the middle schools associated with the high schools.
2. Research Experience for Students. Under the mentorship of an engineering or science researcher, students will conduct their own research project.
- Each high school student selected for this program will be involved in a 12-month research experience, working full-time in the summer and 15 hours per week during the school year.
- Prior to undertaking their own research, students will attend a 4-week summer “Boot Camp” where they learn important scientific research skills necessary to be successful in the laboratory.
- The student’s completed project will be presented at a science fair competition.
3. Science Training for Teachers. Science teachers from partner schools train with a Georgia Tech research scientist to gain exposure to engineering and science research and acquire laboratory skills.
- Teachers have the option to be involved either in training continually over the year or only during summer months.
- Teacher participants helped to develop the Project ENGAGES program and now help to co-teach the course during the summer with Georgia Tech staff to new student participants.
- Through training, teachers are equipped to expand the current classroom curriculum into new areas of science and engineering that enables them to have a wider impact on science education in the partnering high schools.
Program Outcomes to date include:
- 102 students served so far; 26 in the current class (including 11 returning students, and 15 new students)
- 17 ENGAGES students graduated high school in 2018. Of those, all will be attending college in the fall, most with partial or full scholarships to top-ranked institutions, such as New York University, Vanderbilt, University of Pennsylvania, George Washington University and Notre Dame. Five decided to attend Georgia Tech. Other schools included Agnes Scott, DePauw University, UGA, and Georgia State University.
- Six (6) students have received the prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship.
- One female student from KIPP Atlanta Collegiate has been selected as a KPMG Future Leaders Scholarship recipient and will travel to Chicago on June 25 to speak on a panel with Condoleezza Rice and Michelle Obama about the advancement, development and empowerment of women.
- ENGAGES students have presented their research at national conferences and are contributing to cutting edge university research, many of which are being published on papers.
- To date, nine (9) scholars have competed at the INTEL International Science Fair and one (1) student placed, winning scholarship money.