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TCE Partners Host Big Orange STEM Saturday

Four women speak to a crowd with a screen behind them that reads "How did I become a student in engineering?"

The Big Orange STEM Saturday (BOSS) has been presented by the UT Library and partners for a decade. In recent years, partnerships with the College Access and Persistence Services (CAPS) Outreach Center and Tickle College of Engineering (TCE) have expanded BOSS’s offerings to students. BOSS is a conference for high school students in our region to gain STEM first-hand experience, exposure, and practice in the hopes to empower them to further their education and impact through interaction with STEM educators and student leaders. This year’s theme was What’s Your STEM Superpower?

Participants across campus and the community participated to bring exciting experiences and interactions to over 150 students this year. Students chose from eight sessions to attend, enjoyed time with a variety of exhibitors, and attended a keynote presentation by four TCE student leaders.

This event represents the first time a TCE department has co-sponsored and co-chaired the event, with Industrial and Systems Engineering and Assistant Professor of Practice Laura Knight collaborating with the co-chair, Thura Mack, from the Hodges Library Community Learning Services and Diversity Programs. Campus-wide partners also included STEM Education/VOLS Teach, CAPS, OIT, and the library.

This year is also the first time an all-student keynote was presented. ISE students Kalina Scarbrough, Kay Howell, Regina Ratkovich, and Alaina Washington motivated the participants that “You Can be a STEM Superhero, too!”

Breakout sessions from TCE included: Program Your Own Superhero – Amir Sadovnik, Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; Saving the Day – the Engineering Way! – Anne Skutnik, Director of Student Success, and Betsy Chesnutt, Lecturer, Engineering Fundamentals; and Hulking Out: Radiation in our Everyday Lives – David Raji, Mairead Montague, Carlotta Ghezi, and Izzy Lindsay, graduate students, Nuclear Engineering.