Research has proven that one of the best ways to engage students in science, technology, engineering and math is with hands-on activities. Utah’s first annual STEM Fest will do just that. More than 10,000 seventh and eighth grade students will engage with science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) through interactive experiences from March 25 to 27.

STEM Fest will take place at the UCCU Center at Utah Valley University. Seventh and eighth grade classes will attend Wednesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event will be open to the public from 2-8 p.m. on Friday.

Utah companies, STEM departments from Utah’s major universities and the science centers—such as the Museum of Natural Curiosity, the Clark Planetarium and the Living Planet Aquarium—will engage with students through interactive experiences.

Students will have the opportunity to:
• Take flight in Hill Air Force Base’s flight simulator
• Maneuver BYU’s underwater remote operated vehicle through a 200-gallon water tank
• See the inner workings of a racecar from the Miller Speedway
• Learn coding basics from Google Fiber
• Complete a mission in the USS Mercury Mobile Space Simulator
• And so much more!

“STEM Fest will give kids a peek into the future at the cool STEM-based jobs and technology right here in Utah,” said Troy Holmberg, director of Engineering Good and Social Innovation at US Synthetic. “Every student will be assigned a real STEM job as their identity for the day. They will come away inspired to acquire the STEM skills they need to compete for these jobs. We hope to dispel the common misperceptions about STEM-based jobs that they are ‘too hard’ or ‘uncool’ or ‘not for girls’ etc. There is something for everyone to ignite imaginations and stimulate curiosity. The kids will have so much fun they won’t even realize they are learning.”

STEM Fest invites companies to sign up and exhibit, so they can show students what a STEM career can truly be. Information on how to sponsor an exhibit at Utah’s STEM Fest can be found at http://utahstemfest.com/sponsorship-opportunities/.

Teachers who would like to bring their seventh and eighth grade students to this free event will need to register at utahstemfest.com.

STEM Fest’s partners include Utah Community Credit Union, US Synthetic, Utah Valley University, Utah’s STEM Action Center, IM Flash, and the Boys and Girls Club of Utah County.

For more information on Utah STEM Fest visit utahstemfest.com.