Collaborating across disciplines and the Commonwealth: Engaging students in community-based learning

Katherine E. Rowan, Cynthia Smith

Session Information

Year: 2016 | Time: 4:15pm-5:45pm (Poster Session) | Location: (Fenwick 2nd Floor) Poster Session


The School Environmental Action Showcase is in its fifth year at George Mason University. This event may be the largest STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) showcase in Virginia. Seven hundred youth, from kindergarten through high school, present their environmentally oriented research at Mason’s Center for the Arts in April.


The Mason leader, a science professor, has coordinated with a communication faculty member to support SEAS.  SEAS  is funded by the 4VA Wind and Watershed partnership.  It also includes faculty and students in a James Madison University course, community NGOs, dozens of regional K-12 schools, state and federal agencies, Mason admissions and sustainability offices, public officials, and student volunteers.  Youth present projects such as planting radishes to improve the cleanliness of Virginia waters and designing wind turbines to increase energy production.  This proposed lightning talk will share highlights, Mason students’ feedback, and lessons learned about teaming across disciplines.


active learning, STEM, multidisciplinary collaboration


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