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RCCC to host seventh STEM Open House

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College

KANNAPOLIS — Rowan-Cabarrus Community College invites people of all ages to its seventh annual STEM Open House at its facility on the North Carolina Research Campus (NCRC).

On Thursday, April 19, from 5 to 8 p.m. the College will welcome the community to a fun, interactive event showcasing the college’s science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs.

“Almost everything we do in life has STEM applications, but not everyone realizes it,” said Dr. Carol A. Scherczinger, dean of the college’s arts and sciences department. “STEM subjects are very concrete. Science deals with our natural and physical world. Technology has given us the iPads, smart phones and computers we use every single day. Engineering is all about building things. Mathematics ranges from financial decisions to gaming strategies, such as playing pool or engaging in games of logic.”

The college will have dozens of interactive exhibits for children and adults of all ages to dazzle the senses and stir curiosity for all things STEM. The community will have the opportunity to view strawberry DNA, make ice cream using dry ice, experience virtual welding and even engage in activities involving how germs pass from person to person.

“The STEM Open House is a true celebration of science, technology, engineering and math,” said Dr. Carol S. Spalding, president of Rowan-Cabarrus. “One of my goals since coming to Rowan-Cabarrus has been to increase the breadth and depth of our STEM education. I fully believe that everyone can be interested in STEM – and that it is critical that we embrace these subjects. America used to be the leader in technology and innovation. It’s time for us to reclaim that role.”

The college wants younger children to attend with their parents. The exhibits will be extremely diverse – everything from the chemistry of extracting DNA to the creation of milk fireworks to star gazing to view the college’s named star! The stargazing will begin after the STEM event has concluded at 8 p.m.

“Holding this event at our building on the North Carolina Research Campus (NCRC) makes a lot of sense. Our NCRC building is the home of our biotechnology and nursing programs – two of our most STEM intensive curricula,” said Spalding.

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College’s STEM Open House will be one of the many events occurring as part of the N.C. Science Festival taking place from April 1 through 30.

“In addition to driving more traditional-aged prospective students, we also want younger children (elementary- and middle-school-aged) to participate with their parents,” said Scherczinger.

Given that STEM is an important focus for Rowan-Cabarrus; the college has committed to play a large role in the N.C. Science Festival. Activities will focus on engaging the younger generation in science. Events across the state are designed to bring science to life for students and their parents.

Surrounding high schools are busing in students for a special rendition of the STEM Open House just for these students on Friday, April 20, from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.

For more information about this event or to bring a school group, please contact Crystal Ryerson at 704-216-3806 or crystal.ryerson@rccc.edu. The college’s location for the STEM Open House is on the North Carolina Research Campus, 399 Biotechnology Lane, Kannapolis. For more information about Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, please visit www.rccc.edu.

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