From medical and flight simulations to virtual welding and robotics, community STEM Festivals provide fun learning experiences for all ages. Held throughout the year in each of the six STEM regions, STEM Festivals feature businesses and educational organizations local to the communities in which they are held. These free, hands-on learning opportunities engage youth and adults in STEM activities, while exposing festival-goers to organizations and careers in the area.
Nearly 50 STEM Festivals take place across the state each year in various communities, engaging more than 22,000 Iowans. With a goal of introducing and generating interest in STEM fields, STEM Festivals are planned and facilitated by Regional STEM Managers and dedicated volunteer planning committee members. To provide further access, virtual STEM Festival opportunities are occasionally offered as well.
"STEM Festivals are a great opportunity to let kids know about different careers out there. It doesn't matter what career they choose, there will likely be waste to manage. Hopefully by doing an upcycling activity at the booth, this opens their eyes to other purposes and creative use of materials," said Tammy Turner, Iowa Waste Exchange resource specialist.
“Iowa’s STEM Council is intent on reaching all kids of Iowa regardless of zip code, and regional Festivals fill a critical need to connect families with local resources and career pathways,” said Jeff Weld, STEM Council executive director.
For more information about volunteering or attending upcoming STEM Festivals near you, contact your Regional STEM Manager at www.iowastem.org/regions. A listing of upcoming regional festivals and events can be found at www.iowastem.org/parents.