Recap of X-STEM, Speaker Words of Wisdom & More!
Recap of X-STEM, Speaker Words of Wisdom & More!
5th USA Science & Engineering Festival
This past Friday in Washington, D.C. over 3,000 students attended the 2017 X-STEM Symposium! Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense, students from all over the country gathered at the Convention Center and heard stories of inspiration from speakers with prosperous careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. 

“The wonderful success of this year’s X-STEM continues our mission to inspire our nation’s youth to join the STEM community.  I give a heartfelt thank you to our partner at the United States Department of Defense for their acknowledgment and support of our efforts.  I wish to convey my appreciation and respect for our 21 amazing speakers who donated their time and energy to pass on their passion for their STEM fields.  Lastly, I want to thank the educators and students who recognize the importance of efforts like this to further enforce their desire to enrich our lives in the future."  - USA Science & Engineering Festival Executive Director Marc Schulman

2017 X-STEM Highlights

For the 4th consecutive year, the X-STEM Symposium has brought middle and high school students up close and personal with some of the nation's most innovative STEM professionals. Last Friday, students had the opportunity to engage with speakers during the live presentations and collected their autographs on our individual Speaker Trading Cards! Thank you to all of our amazing X-STEM Speakers, teachers, students, volunteers and our 2017 X-STEM Sponsor, the U.S. Department of Defense, for an extraordinary day of STEM discovery!

X-STEM Words of Wisdom 

Dr. Albert Yu-Min Lin
Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Planet3, National Geographic Explorer, and Research Scientist at UC San Diego
"Doing anything you really care about in STEM allows you to become the explorer." 
X-STEM Attendees discovered this exciting, innovative young scientist and his ambitious new company called Planet3 aimed at presenting the entire Earth as a live digital learning laboratory platform in the classroom! Students lined up for over an hour for a chance to chat with Dr. Yu-Min Lin and get a signed autograph! 
Falon Fatemi
CEO & Founder, Node
“The coolest thing about computer science is that you can have an idea and you can develop it at your fingertips.”  
At age 19, she became the youngest employee at Google where she was responsible for strategizing the company´s entrance into such markets as Europe and Africa. Now as founder and CEO of her company, Node, she is redefining the way web information is organized, resulting in greater tailored and personalization of this information for users.
Bobak Ferdowsi
Aerospace Systems Engineer, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
"We're told Earth is unique and trust me I wouldn't pick anywhere else to live but there's increasing evidence of habitability elsewhere."
An internet sensation, this NASA flight director sported the cool mohawk hairdo in JPL’s mission control center as the rover Curiosity made its historic descent onto Mars in 2012. Bobak, an inspiring systems engineer, captivated students describing how his “mohawk experience” catapulted him into the national spotlight, and about the many exciting careers that await young students in space science!
Dr. Arthur Shapiro
Vision Scientist, American University
"The knowledge of the technical makes creativity possible, learning how to code etc. opens doors for your creativity." 
Students explored the fascinating world of the science of visual illusions with this internationally-known cognitive neuro-scientist from American University. Dr. Shapiro's work is teaching us about how optical illusions can trick the eye and brain in the perception of reality, and how this research is being applied in the real world -- ranging from devising more effective diagnostic methods for eye conditions, to explaining why a curve ball is so hard to hit!
Jill Heinerth 
Underwater Explorer,
"Fear, that feeling tells you that you're doing something special, that you're pushing the envelope." 
One of the few women in the world to rise to prominence in the fields of underwater exploration and cave diving, this adventurer took students deep beneath the surface of some of the most dangerous and fascinating watery locations on the planet!  

Andrew Augustin
Award-winning Game Designer and CEO of Notion Games
"There were definitely times when I wanted to quit, but those situations pushed me to go harder." 
X-STEM Attendees let their imagination go as this award-winning creator of such games as Super Ubie Land, Team Notion and characters for The Sims 3 Pets, explored the fascinating high-tech world of game designing!

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As part of X-STEM 2017, we collaborated with Festival Sponsor Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH), to create a special STEM Career Luncheon for a select number of students that attended X-STEM. Last Friday, nearly thirty BAH employees spoke to a group of over 130 high school students from D.C. and Maryland schools about their day-to-day lives working as STEM professionals at BAH. Thank you, Booz Allen Hamilton, for providing students with this opportunity! 

Meet the X-STEM Speakers on Facebook Live  

Speaker Interviews on Facebook Live!
During the X-STEM Symposium, a few of our speakers hosted Facebook Live videos on our Facebook Page. Be sure to check them out to get a behind the scenes look at X-STEM with NASA's Bobak Ferdowsi, Ocean Advocate and TV Host Danni Washington, Underwater Explorer Jill Heinerth, Environmental Change Maker Charles Orgbon III and Noah Wilson-Rich from The Best Bee's Company.   
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Thank You Volunteers! 

A very special thank you to all the volunteers who helped to make the X-STEM Symposium a great success! We hope to see all of you again at the 5th USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo in April of 2018! Stay tuned to our newsletter and follow us on social media to learn how you can join the nation's largest celebration of STEM as a volunteer!




American Physical Society
Booz Allen Hamilton
Events DC
Innovation & Tech Today
National Institutes of Health
National Science Foundation


Campbell Soup Company
Physics Today


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