STEM for Scholars




STEM for Scholars is a four-week summer program, July 10 – August 4, 2017, to be held on the Tampa campus of the University of South Florida. It is for high achieving, high school students entering grades 10 – 12. The program is designed to expand student horizons in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), and prepare them for academic and college life. The program aims to show the interconnectedness of the various fields of STEM. Courses will be taught by outstanding USF faculty. Students will have the opportunity to develop critical thinking and conceptual creativity. They will be engaged and challenged, through active, hands-on participation in all aspects of the program. Students will be divided into two levels. Level I is for students entering 10th grade, and Level II is for students entering grades 11 and 12. The program offers University of South Florida academic credit.

Students in Level I, will take the following courses:

1. Computing and Visualization for Research and Discovery
This course gives students an introduction into multiple areas of research computing. Major concepts for communicating with data are explored on a technical and scientific level. Through various hands-on assignments students will bolster interdisciplinary problem-solving skills while using computation and creativity as tools for interpreting, analyzing, and presenting data. This course will be held in the University of South Florida's Advanced Visualization Center Lab.

2. MAT 4930 – Finite Mathematics (2 USF Credits)
This course deals with concepts in areas of logic, linear equations, Euler circuits, spiral growth in Nature, permutations/combinations and probability. Developing analytical skills and methods of mathematical research are an integral part of the course.

Students will be in class from 10:30-2:30 with a break for lunch.

Students in Level II will take the following courses:

1. IDH 4930 – Honors College Selected Topics: Interdisciplinary Research in Science (1 USF credit)
This course is an evidence-based, student-centered, and integrated learning experience. It was designed by an interdisciplinary team – from physicist to philosopher – to expose students, regardless of major, to the methods, practice, and culture of scientific research. Students will learn literature review, experimental design and presentation skills required for success in interdisciplinary science research.

2. IDH 4930 – Honors College Selected Topics: Microbiology – Bad Bugs, No Drugs (2 USF credits)
In this class students will go in search of new, and never before discovered antibiotics. They will explore nature for new organisms that make compounds which could be used to develop novel drugs. Using a series of lectures and laboratory based exercises, we hope to give students an exciting research driven experience. At the same time, we hope to generate an appreciation and understanding of cutting edge biological research, and the living world around us.

3. MAT 4930 – Selected Topics in Mathematics – From Ideas to Proofs (2 USF credits)
It is often said that mathematics is the language of science (or, sometimes, that it is just language). Fortunately, there is more to it, as the students will discover by hands-on activities during this class. While providing a rigorous pre-calculus foundation and an intensive introduction to calculus and differential equations, this class will also engage the students into mathematical discovery, set them on the path from problem-solving to proof-writing, and then lead on towards the freedom of mathematical creativity.

Students will be in class from 9:00 - 3:30 with a break for lunch.

Commuter and Residential Options

This program offers a commuter option for students entering grades 10-12 and a residential option for students in grades 11-12. Students in the residential program will reside in Poplar Residence Hall.

Commuter Program Cost:

$950 for Level I students. Includes:

$1,600 for Level II students. Includes:

Residential Program Cost:

$2,950 for Level II students. Includes:

Note: A limited number of scholarship are available. Contact the STEM Education Center for details.

 Application Process:

  1. To begin the application process, please fill out our interest form, and then submit:

  2. An application form, including a 250 word essay explaining why you would like to participate in the STEM for Scholars program. Please note the application form cannot be saved and returned to be completed at a later time. 

  3. A non-refundable application fee of $35, here.  

  4. An official copy of your current transcript. This must be requested from your school and can be mailed, faxed or emailed to the contact information below.

  5. A copy of your PSAT, SAT, and/or ACT scores (if applicable).

    • Submit copies of all of the above tests for which you have received scores. If you have not taken any of these tests, please note that this will not preclude your acceptance to the program.

    • Please do not submit your test scores through the USF school code. You will need to make a copy of these scores and then mail, fax, or scan and email the copies to the contact information below.

If you are accepted, you will be notified by email.  The USF Pre-College Office will follow up to gather information to create your university student account and register you for your summer courses. A deposit will be due on acceptance and the remainder of your balance by May 30, 2017.

Application Deadline:
June 16, 2017

For more program specific information for STEM for Scholars:

STEM Education Center
4202 East Fowler Avenue, CMC 342
Tampa, FL 33620
Phone: (813) 974-4068

For more general information on USF PreCollege:

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