Friday, January 21, 2011

eCYBERMISSION 2010-2011

     The eCYBERMISSION 2010-2011 team registration has closed and everyone at eCYBERMISSION is thrilled to see so many people taking part in our science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) competition. From the students who are preparing their unique projects, to the team advisors who ensure their teams take the necessary steps to achieve success, eCYBERMISSION would like to take this moment to congratulate each and every one of you.

     Today, the importance of STEM education has never been greater. Last year President Barack Obama launched an “Educate to Innovate” campaign to set a new standard of excellence in STEM education and prepare our country’s youth for the challenges of the future. Now in its ninth year, eCYBERMISSION continues to connect large numbers of our student population with the real-life applications of STEM and how it can impact our local, national and even global communities. Propelled by the same innovation demonstrated by our participants every year, eCYBERMISSION continues to grow and evolve. The 2010-2011 competition introduces an expanded number of Mission Challenges, as well as a completely redesigned award structure. These new aspects of eCYBERMISSION not only allow for a wider array of scientific discovery, but will also reward a larger portion of our student population for their exploration of science.

     To properly evaluate all of your projects, eCYBERMISSION is already working hard to assemble a diverse panel of Virtual Judges. Our new awards structure will now allow the judges to reward a first-place winner and a second-place winner for each state. Both teams will receive U.S. EE Savings Bonds, but the first-place state winners will progress through the Regional Judging process, whereby the regional winners will be determined and each regional winner will be invited to participate in the National Judging & Educational Event in June 2011 for a chance to win the national title for their grade.

     Seeing thousands of students and advisors committed to STEM is truly exciting, but it is very important to remember that this is only the first step in your science journey. No matter how many challenges you encounter, it is important to stay positive and keep developing your project. STEM education is an important goal of eCYBERMISSION and we are here to help support you in every step along the way. We encourage students and team advisors to take full advantage of the resources we have organized for you. We hope that you will utilize the CyberGuides, TeamTalk and the Discussion Forums to receive the most benefit from our online resources.

     The deadline to submit your Mission Folder is February 25, 2011. There is still plenty of time left to conduct your science exploration, but time will move quickly. Create a plan with your team, work hard to stay on track, and most importantly, have fun. The eCYBERMISSION team looks forward to receiving your Mission Folders and hope to see you at that National Judging and Educational Event in 2011.

Katie Blanding, PhD.
STEM Outreach Manager
US Army Research, Development and Engineering Command

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