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Discover, Relate, Engage, Attract, Motivate with Interactive Technologies (DREAM-IT): 1104263

Principal Investigator: Patricia Frederick
CoPrincipal Investigator(s): Warren Knox
Organization: Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station

The Discover, Relate, Engage, Attract, Motivate with Interactive Technologies (DREAM-IT) project provides awareness and increases interest in information technology as a STEM career for high school students. The project team is addressing the challenge of inspiring underrepresented and first generation in college students and convincing them that a STEM degree is attainable. Objectives include using interactive computer programming to create awareness and interest in STEM careers, fostering a connection with Del Mar College, familiarizing parents with college admission and financial aid opportunities and enhancing high school teacher awareness of STEM careers. The ultimate goal is to increase the number of students successfully completing introductory computer programming courses.

The innovative project-based summer camp exposes high school students to information technology. Students are divided into digital media and computer programming teams that form the basis for extended projects. Teams reverse roles during the second week. Programming assignments are completed using the Scratch environment developed at MIT. The teachers arrive three days early to learn the curriculum and technologies. They then serve as leaders during the camp. This exposure is expected to impact classrooms in their local communities. Ongoing activities throughout the year are provided for students and parents to learn more about information technology careers and Del Mar College opportunities. In total, the three camps are expected to serve thirteen teachers and one hundred students.