ARC Launches Virtual Summer Study Program in STEM for Region’s Middle and High School Students & Teachers

94 Students and Teachers From 13 Appalachian States To Participate in Unique Online Learning Experience Beginning July 6

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 1, 2020—Today, the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) announced that 81 high school and middle school students and 13 high school teachers from 13 Appalachian states will participate in the 30th annual ARC/ORNL Summer STEM Program. Originally planned as residential learning experience, this program will be delivered virtually beginning July 6.

The ARC/ORNL Summer STEM Program, a partnership between Oak Ridge Associated Universities and ARC, has pioneered access to STEM-related research opportunities for Appalachia’s high school and middle school students and high school teachers for 30 years. As part of the ARC/ORNL Summer STEM program, students collaborate with award-winning scientists at the Oak Ridge National Lab on guided group science, math, and computer science technology research projects, while high school teachers work with science practitioners to develop STEM-related curriculum. Due to COVID concerns, this year’s students and teachers will participate via a specialized three-week online curriculum including lectures, group work, and individual STEM skill development. Students will also participate in a final virtual showcase to present their work.

“For 30 years, Appalachian students and teachers have been coming together with some of our country’s top researchers to engage in a rewarding and innovative learning experience at Oak Ridge National Laboratory,” said ARC Federal Co-Chairman Tim Thomas. “That innovative approach is allowing this program to continue this year, as instructors and participants alike have risen to the occasion to take part in a virtual program, a commendable result in a difficult circumstance.”

Participants for this program were chosen via a competitive Region wide application process. As part of enrollment, students will be provided computers, 3D printers, and other needed materials. Each student and teacher will receive a formal Certificate of Completion at the end of the program.

About the Appalachian Regional Commission
The Appalachian Regional Commission is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.