Emerging young leaderscommunity summit has ‘STEM-u-Iating’, success
Platform presenters posed to “Kick-Off” the EYL community summit.
BROWARD COUNTY, FL- Four Broward County Chapters of Alpha Kappa Sorority, Inc. (AKA) held a success-fully engaging community summit with Emerging Young Leaders (EYL) featuring seasonal activities in 2013, at Margate Middle School in Tamarac, Fla. Zeta Rho Omega, Kappa Kappa Omega, Upsilon Xi Omega /Sigma Chi Undergraduates, and Chi Psi Omega Chapters hosted more than 100 middle school boys and girls in a five hour summit, themed “Plant a STEM … Grow the Future”.
This activity based, hands-on summit served as an intervention to enhance student exposure to the components of STEM education. As noted by the national president of AKA Sorority, Inc.,
Attorney Carolyn House Ste-wart, test score results among middle school, African American students are often less than favorable in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. It is further noted that these are critical areas contingent upon future success and being able to be competitive and marketable when seeking employment. Based on these statistics, President Stewart’s charge to each Chapter of AKA Sorority, Inc., both nationally and inter-nationally, has been to host com-munity summits inclusive of the STEM components.
“Plant a STEM … Grow the Future” was a fitting summit theme, as workshops featured hands on science experiments to align with Common Core Standards, technology using desktop computers and iPads, engineering through robotics and technology, mind bending mathematics through math puzzles, problem solving strategies using mental math and games. Undergraduates from Sigma Chi Chapter at Nova University conducted a Cyber Bullying workshop, a culminating forum on Cyber Bullying and discussion on the use and consequences of social media. All participating middle school students were encouraged to take ownership against bullying by taking a pledge to stay away from all conversations and actions that lead to bullying.
Throughout the course of the day, students actively rotated through a total of five energetic and action packed sessions. Each session was hosted by one or more of the aforementioned chapters responsible for planning and implementation of the summit. Sessions lasted for 30 minutes and were equipped to facilitate up to 30 students. Session presenters and facilitators were sorority members, local teachers, members of the Crockett Foundation, and volunteers. Parents attending the event were able to participate in an exclusive training to address bullying. Mrs. Karen Moreland presented an extensive, informational workshop with a follow-up Q & A session and parent discussion. Handouts were given to parents that provided tips and resources in the fight against bullying. Many personal stories were shared as this became a forum that doubled as a support group to those who felt their children or families may have been victims. Other summit high-lights included greetings and words of inspiration and encouragment from School Board member, Dr. Rosalind Osgood from District 5, school principal, Mr. Earnest Toliver, Ms. Sheri Brown, Vice President of the Community Foundation and words from Mr. Henri Crockett in the opening session. Chapter presidents, Mrs. Joe Ann Fletcher, Mrs. Rendolyn Amaker, Ms. Lisa Bell and Mrs. Barbara Thomas were also among those bringing greetings to summit participants. To culminate activities for the day, students were involved in a number of drawings that included giveaways such as mouse pads, gift cards, and four electronic tab-lets.