Every summer the University of Idaho’s Upward Bound STEM Access program focus changes in order to give students a experience exploring a new side to STEM careers. Last summer we looked at ecology and students created a model future city called Ecolibrium. This summer we’re looking at transportation — specifically, ways to make the transportation systems of the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley more liveable for present and future residents.
This summer our enrollment has jumped, from 12 to 25 high school students. They come from Lewiston, Moscow, Post Falls, and Coeur d’Alene in Idaho, as well as from Clarkston and Asotin in Washington. Our program is taking them through three chapters in their transportation study:
- A community exploration in the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley, June 24 through July 3. Students work daily at Lewis-Clark State College and also visit the City of Lewiston, the Idaho Department of Transportation, and sites of identified traffic problem areas.
- Transportation engineering studies in Moscow, July 8 through 19. Students compose research papers at the University of Idaho, where they also work with engineering faculty and graduate students from UI’s College of Engineering and the National Institute for Advanced Transportation Technology.
- Transportation systems field study in Washington, D.C., July 22-31. Students explore our nation’s capital as a model for livable transportation systems serving vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians.
As they process all that they’re learning, students will post their photos, videos, and reflections on this blog and our Facebook page. Their work will culminate in a collaborative academic research paper, project model, and presentation. It’s a lot of fun, it’s a lot of work, and it’s all to help high-school students make their way into college and STEM careers!