On February 17, members of the College’s Tau Beta Pi Chapter spent their Saturday morning assisting area high school students with their science projects. With sponsorship from UTC’s STEM Education Program and the program’s coordinator Dr. Jennifer Ellis, the Tau Beta Pi students provided hands on help in a variety of areas including research, display construction, and presentation communication. UTC annually hosts the Chattanooga Regional Science Fair. In March, the University Center will serve as the display site for dozens of projects by area students who have earned prizes in their local fairs.
Tau Beta Pi officers Chemical Engineering major Cooper Thome and Mechanical Engineering major Natalie Burdine coordinated the volunteer effort. Commenting on the purpose of the workshop, Cooper said, “ We can remember working to develop projects for entry in our high school science fairs. It would have been great to have some input from college students about how to get started on a project and how to bring a hypothesis to a reality.”
Tau Beta Pi is the national academic honor society for engineering students. In addition to excellence in academics, the society encourages students’ sponsorship of community outreach and service initiatives. Dr. Gary McDonald, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering, is faculty advisor to the CECS Tau Beta Pi chapter, and Dr. Jim Hiestand, Professor of Mechanical Engineering, serves as the chapter’s treasurer.