Urban League of Palm Beach County’s DeLuca STEM Now Program Helps Students Develop Interests in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math

The DeLuca STEM Now Program has expanded into Bear Lakes Middle School, where 75 students are enrolled.

During our first lab, students did an experiment on determining the PH of various soil samples. They learned about earth materials, what soil is composed of, and how to test the PH of soil. Students each got different samples of soil, sand and rocks and got the opportunity to test the PH and compare samples.

In October, we had guest speaker Orfa Silfa from Otis Elevator Company come in and speak to the students about what she does as a Technical Project Manager. She spoke to the students about the challenges she has faced while in engineering school on being a minority woman.

Students in the program are excited to be engaged with STEM during after school hours and have actively participated in STEM lessons such as our light up speaker lab where students had the opportunity to build their own speaker. 

At another school, Roosevelt Middle school, Joshua Vanzie, a sixth grader, has been enrolled in the DeLuca STEM afterschool program.

Since we began programming in September, Joshua has been very eager for the lab experiments and has been very engaged. He follows directions well and it has been amazing to see him demonstrate leadership skills and help others when they are struggling on an experiment.

Seeing him take the lead to help others in his group or in the program has been encouraging. Being a part of the STEM program allows students the opportunity to challenge themselves and grow.

Joshua definitely challenges himself by problem-solving to figure out an experiment.  Not only does he problem solve, he also helps and teaches other students in the program.

Joshua loves to build and fix things and said he aspires to become a mechanic or an engineer once he is older.