EPSCoR Grant Fuels Science Education in SD
Work from Sanford Lab’s Education and Outreach team will be utilized as a statewide model
By: Erin Broberg
The Education and Outreach (E&O) team at Sanford Underground Research Facility (Sanford Lab) knows an awful lot about how to distill esoteric scientific ideas for K-12 learners. They are also experts at providing professional development opportunities for South Dakota educators. Starting in 2020, their work in science education and workforce development will serve as a statewide model.
In September, the National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded a five-year $20 million grant to the South Dakota Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (SD EPSCoR) and the South Dakota Board of Regents. The project, titled “Beyond the 2020 Vision: Building Research, Education and Innovation Partnerships for South Dakota,” will not only advance the study of biofilms in the state, but also spur the development of statewide science education and workforce development infrastructure.
As part of the grant, teacher workshops will be conducted at six locations throughout South Dakota each summer with a goal to support hundreds of K-12 teachers in providing tens of thousands of students with engaging hands-on science experiences over the next five years.