Father Judge High School opens new STEM center

The art of sci­ence: Stu­dents at Fath­er Judge’s Sci­ence, Tech­no­logy, En­gin­eer­ing and Math­em­at­ics pro­gram design en­gin­eer pro­jects and make mod­els based on their re­search. MARIA POUCH­NIKOVA / TIMES PHOTO

Fath­er Judge High School wel­comes eighth-grade boys and their par­ents to vis­it its new Sci­ence, Tech­no­logy, En­gin­eer­ing and Math­em­at­ics cen­ter.

Judge, at 3301 Solly Ave. (at Row­land Av­en­ue), will open its doors on Tues­day, Feb. 18, from 6 to 7 p.m.

The even­ing will in­clude re­gis­tra­tion for the class of 2018, along with a fin­an­cial aid work­shop. There will also be a present­a­tion on STEM, which was of­fi­cially ded­ic­ated on Jan. 27.

The cen­ter, loc­ated in rooms 313 and 314, was blessed by the Rev. Joseph Campel­lone, pres­id­ent of Judge, and the Rev. James Dalton, prin­cip­al of the school.

At Judge, the be­lief is that STEM will help the school at­tract, cul­tiv­ate and pre­pare stu­dents to be in­nov­at­ors and tech­nic­al lead­ers.

The STEM pro­gram was star­ted by Ju­dith A. Ra­ma­ley, the former dir­ect­or of the Na­tion­al Sci­ence Found­a­tion’s edu­ca­tion and hu­man re­sources di­vi­sion. The idea is to trans­form the typ­ic­al teach­er-centered classroom by en­cour­aging a cur­riculum that is driv­en by prob­lem solv­ing, dis­cov­ery and ex­plor­at­ory learn­ing, and that re­quires stu­dents to act­ively en­gage a situ­ation in or­der to find its solu­tions.

“That’s edu­ca­tion at Judge now,” Dalton said.

The four parts of STEM have been taught sep­ar­ately and most of the time in­de­pend­ent from each oth­er for years, but that has changed.

“We need to be train­ing young people today for fu­ture jobs that don’t even ex­ist yet,” said Greg Kennedy, dir­ect­or of edu­ca­tion at the Southamp­ton-based Na­tion­al AeroSpace Train­ing and Re­search Cen­ter.

Ca­sey Carter, CEO of the Faith in the Fu­ture Found­a­tion, which man­ages the 17 high schools and four spe­cial edu­ca­tion schools in the Arch­diocese of Phil­adelphia, said ini­ti­at­ives such as STEM help good schools be­come great ones.

Carter was joined at the ded­ic­a­tion by Chris­toph­er Mo­m­iney, sec­ret­ary for Cath­ol­ic edu­ca­tion, and Car­ol Cary, su­per­in­tend­ent for sec­ond­ary schools.

State Rep. John Sabat­ina Jr., a 1988 Fath­er Judge gradu­ate, and City Coun­cil­man Bobby Hen­on were also in at­tend­ance.

“We need to be ready for the fu­ture, and it starts right here,” said Hen­on, co-chair­man of the city’s Man­u­fac­tur­ing Task Force.

Fath­er Judge will also host a STEM sum­mer camp from June 23-27, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. It is open to stu­dents en­ter­ing sev­enth or eighth grade.

The camp costs $100, which in­cludes all equip­ment and sup­plies. It will fea­ture les­sons, pro­jects and hands-on activ­it­ies, all con­duc­ted by cer­ti­fied STEM in­struct­ors, that are re­lated to sci­ence, tech­no­logy, en­gin­eer­ing and math. ••

For in­form­a­tion, call the school at 215-338-9494 or email stem@father­judge.com 

You can reach at twaring@bsmphilly.com.

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