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CONVERGE | Community

Meet This Year’s Incredible Connect2STEM Award Winners

May 15, 2018

The program honors exceptional students and teachers for their life’s work and interest in STEM.


By: Kenn Tomasch

The Cox Connect2STEM Awards, presented by Cox Communications in partnership with the Arizona SciTech Festival, honors STEM champions in the areas of business, non-profit, education, media and after school programs. Each award winner in all six categories receives a $1,000 grant to the STEM program of his/her choice.

Meet our winners below!

Innovation Award for Business Winner: The Edison School for Innovation

Edison School for Innovation emphasizes a STEM-based curriculum while partnering with organizations and programs that will help the school advance those goals. The school will serve Glendale and Peoria students in grades K-8 when it opens in August 2018.

Creative Media Award Winner: University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix

The UofA College of Medicine was created as a result of collaboration within the community in the spirit of addressing the health care needs of Arizona. Collaboration with world-class clinical and community partners, coupled with the ever-expanding Phoenix Biomedical Campus, the College is a tremendous resource for Phoenix, as well as all of Arizona

After School Excellence Award Winner: Avondale Elementary School District STEAM Bus

The Avondale Elementary School District showcased its new mobile STEAM bus, with features that include two 3-D printers, robotics and tablets. The mobile STEAM lab is a push by the district to promote and provide hands-on STEAM skills to its students as quickly as possible.

Student Teckie Award Winner: Alper Gel of Aspire Academy

Alper is a motivated leader who worked with other CSOs who surveyed of over 300 students and presented the findings to the Arizona Science Teacher Association.  He also helped organize and facilitate an electronics workshop event, a stargazing night, presentation at Geeks Night Out and the Southwest Maker Fest.

Teacher Teckie Award Winner: John Morris of the Casa Grande School District

John Morris is an outstanding educator who has a passion for teaching, the ability to be flexible,  the gift of patience, and a desire to continue learning.  He is an excellent example of the passion for education that he strives to instill in his students every day.

Chief Science Officer Award Winner: Elaina Ashton

The Chief Science Officer award recognizes an outstanding CSO for the 2017-2018 school year, and are students elected by their peers in 6th to 12th grade to be a liaison for STEM and innovation in our schools and community.

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