SGTC hosts first STEM Camp of summer

Published 10:14 am Friday, June 29, 2018

CORDELE — South Georgia Technical College (SGTC) hosted its first STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — camp of the summer recently at its Crisp County Center location in Cordele. The free camp was a way to show and teach the participants about how STEM education is applied in various real-world trades.
The camp lasted three days, and allowed the participants, who were all high-school-aged students, to learn about STEM through talking with various SGTC instructors and participating in several hands-on lessons.
SGTC grant coordinator Nancy Fitzgerald, with the help of Jenna Rhodes of the Chattahoochee-Flint Regional Education Service Agency (RESA), hosted the camp for the participants, helping them learn and assisting them with their activities throughout the camp.
On the first day, students visited with electronics instructor Deryk Stoops and medical assisting instructor Vickie Gilbert. Stoops taught the students about the difference in watts, amps and volts. Later in the day, the students learned from Gilbert about the hand and its functions, practiced drawing blood in a phlebotomy simulator and took a tour of the medical assisting lab area. Gilbert’s hand activity played into the student’s main project for the week, which was to create a robotic hand.
Over the next two days, students learned about solar and wind energy from electrical systems instructor Mike Enfinger, learned about the science behind crime scene investigation with Webster County Chief Investigator Steve Mauldin, learned how to and practiced welding with welding instructor Tommy Skinner and even baked cookies with new culinary arts instructor Hunter Little.
“Our program has been designed to be educational and entertaining,” Fitzgerald said. “SGTC is fortunate to be able to offer this program for free from a grant that was awarded to us, and we are looking forward to hosting more STEM days and STEM camps in the future. If I have inspired one student to further his or her education in STEM or choose a STEM field for a career, then it’s definitely worthwhile and a success.”
The next and final STEM camp of the summer will be held on SGTC’s Americus campus in July and will be designed for sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade students. The event is sold out.

A STEM camp participant learns about welding by jumping right in. Before practicing, participants learned about the science and mathematics behind welding.