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Oklahoma TSA Will Help Co-Host National Conference

National Technology Student Association logoJune 24, 2015

More than 350 Oklahomans from 51 schools will help host the National Technology Student Association Conference in Texas this summer.

Scheduled to attend and serve as co-hosts for the conference June 28 through July 2 are 273 students, 63 advisers and 52 other Oklahomans. The conference, with the theme “Designing Your Dreams,” will be in the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center in Grapevine, Texas.

Oklahoma TSA is co-hosting the national conference with Texas TSA, said Dawn Frank, TSA state adviser and science, technology, engineering and mathematics program specialist at the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education. TSA is one of seven co-curricular CareerTech student organizations.

“This year, our advisers, students and chaperones will be busy helping with set-up, competition and activities,” Frank said.

The students will also demonstrate their STEM skills and knowledge during the 31 middle school and 35 high school competitions, attend leadership training, be recognized for involvement with and fundraising for the American Cancer Society, receive other awards and meet representatives of colleges and businesses from across the country, Frank said.

Special events will include the Junior Solar Sprint Competition for middle school students, which is supported by the Army Educational Outreach Program. The new event supports STEM instruction in categories such as alternative fuels, engineering design and aerodynamics.

Groups of students will compete in the Tests of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics and Science competitions, which applies math and science to practical engineering challenges. The written, oral and problem-solving competition will determine the TEAMS Best in Nation participants.

Oklahoma TSA students Madison Pfeifle and Kelsey Bart both said that the conference benefits TSA members because they can both compete against and connect with students from across the country and even the world.

The conference also provides benefits for teachers who accompany the students, Frank said.

“It offers invaluable exposure to the latest teaching and learning best practices. Their participation in TSA complements their programs and their professional development,” she explained.

TSA is affiliated with science, technology, engineering and mathematics education. The CareerTech student organization gives students opportunities they might not otherwise have, Frank said.

“TSA fosters personal growth, leadership and opportunities in technology, innovation, design and engineering,” she said. “Members apply and integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics concepts through co-curricular activities, competitive events and related programs.”

The other six CareerTech student organizations and their related study areas are Family, Career and Community Leaders of America and family and consumer sciences education, FFA and agricultural education, DECA and marketing education, HOSA and health careers education, Business Professionals of America and business and information technology education and SkillsUSA and trade and industrial education.

For more information about TSA, visit http://www.okcareertech.org/tsa. For more information about Oklahoma CareerTech STEM, visit http://www.okcareertech.org/stem. For more information about Oklahoma CareerTech visit http://www.okcareertech.org.

The Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education provides leadership and resources and assures standards of excellence for a comprehensive statewide system of career and technology education. The system offers programs and services in 29 technology center districts operating on 59 campuses, 393 comprehensive school districts and 13 Skills Centers campuses that include three juvenile facilities.

The agency is governed by the State Board of Career and Technology Education and works closely with the State Department of Education and the State Regents for Higher Education to provide a seamless educational system for all Oklahomans.

Laura Wilson, Writer/Editor

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