By ARL Staff
Tuesday, January 27, 2014
The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) administrates a free Army Education Outreach Program (AEOP) called eCYBERMISSION.
eCYBERMISSION is a free US Army funded national web-based Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) competition for students in grades six through nine that promotes self-discovery and enables all students to recognize the real-life applications of science, math and technology.
Teams from all over the country propose solutions to real problems in their communities by using scientific practices or the engineering design process, and compete for state, regional and national awards.
Teams select a Mission Challenge, identify a real problem in their community, use the scientific method, science inquiry or engineering design process to propose a solution and submit a Mission Folder, or the official write-up of their project, via the eCYBERMISSION website.
The teams may consist of students from U.S.-based private, public or home schools, after-school programs and extracurricular organizations, or Department of Defense Education Activity schools located in the U.S. or overseas.
Last year’s winning teams focused on finding a way to reduce damaging force to the brain in impact sports like hockey and football, algal biofuels as an alternative source of energy, a device to alert individuals of water-related accidents, and a solution to distracted driving.
eCYBERMISSION representatives including Dr. Frank Curcio, AEOP/eCYBERMISSION Outreach Specialist; Luci Salvi, ARL Human Research and Engineering Directorate STEM Outreach Coordinator; and Mr. Angel Rodriguez, Branch Chief in HRED’s Ground Simulation Environment in Orlando and eCYBERMISSION Ambassador for Central Florida, recently visited the Adelphi Laboratory Center to brief employees on how to become eCYBERMISSION volunteers.
Volunteers are essential to the success of the program, and provide students with a real world look at STEM careers and opportunities within the Department of Defense and the Army.
Most professionals who serve as eCYBERMISSION volunteers have a background in STEM disciplines, provide their area of expertise, and commit to educating and guiding America’s youth.
This year, to encourage more scientists and engineers to become an eCYBERMISSION volunteer, a RDECOM sponsored challenge has been established for the most volunteers registered.
The organization with the largest number of registered eCYBERMISSION volunteers will receive up to $20,000 for the promotion of AEOP or in support of AEOP priorities and an invitation to the National Judging and Educational Event (NJEE) in June for recognition.
According to Curcio, the program is very interested in recruiting Virtual Judges at this time, due to the ever growing number of registered student teams from in and around the country.
Virtual Judges are volunteers with a background or interest in STEM or education who objectively review and score the Mission Folders, completely online, to identify state winning teams.
“Everything is web-based, and volunteers are able to guide and show students what real science is,” said Curcio.
“Registration is simple, yet can greatly impact the overall learning experience for the students,” added Curcio.
For more information and to sign up as an eCYBERMISSION volunteer, visit www.ecybermission.com.