The Science Club model is more than integrated science programming. We’re committed to developing impactful programs through rigorous evaluation. Science Club and Science Club Summer Camp were both developed through STEM Education Partnership Awards (SEPA) from the National Institutes for Health.
The corresponding longitudinal research studies track engagement, confidence, and skills for participants over many years. We measure academic outcomes (like test scores and science fair projects) alongside attitudes (through interviews and surveys) and personal outcomes (such as college majors and career choices).
We’re thrilled that Science Club programs are not only a fun, engaging and inspiring experience for our participants but that we’re seeing real measurable results.
Science Club Afterschool exposes youth to many STEM fields and career paths. Through the Science Club curriculum, they explore everything from biomedical engineering to food science to environmental science. They work closely with their scientist mentors and learn about their mentors educational/career paths.
Now, our youth alumni are actively pursuing STEM careers.
Before Science Club, 1 out of 100 students from the Pedersen-McCormick Boys & Girls Club were entering STEM tracks in college. Of our college-aged Science Club alumni, 32% are currently enrolled in college STEM majors. They are interested in engineering, biology, computer science, and health medicine. We couldn’t be prouder of our alums!
Science Club mentors gain teaching, communication, and leadership skills that will be valuable to their future careers.
Mentors participate in the program an average of 1.5 years and spend about 50 hours teaching urban youth. Mentors receive at least an additional 12 hours of training during quarterly orientation sessions and professional development lunches. They also get plenty of informal support from Science in Society staff and their fellow mentors.
As a result of this training and their experience working with the kids at the Boys & Girls Clubs, Science Club mentors report significantly improved skills in a retrospective pre/post survey.
Science Club has hands down made my graduate school experience more fulfilling. This has been a tremendous learning experience. I’ve learned different teaching strategies, how to plan and design curriculum and build a relationship with a new community partner. I am starting a career in science outreach and education and that is 100% because of Science Club.Stephanie RangelScience Club Mentor
I wasn’t thinking about a career in science until I started in Science Club at the Boys & Girls Club. It changed my life. I’ll be graduating next year from the university of Kentucky with a degree in Biomedical Engineering. It would not have happened without the Club and Northwestern mentors.Myles M.Science Club Graduate & Biomedical Engineering Major, University of Kentucky