Anchorage School District students attend ANSEP’s first Middle School Academy of 2017

27-Jan-2017 ANCHORAGE, ALASKA – This week, the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program welcomed Anchorage School District students for its first Middle School Academy of 2017. Over the past few days, students have been designing and building balsa wood bridges – just one of the hands-on science, technology, engineering and math activities during this two-week, residential component, held on campus at the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Thanks to the support of ANSEP’s strategic partners, Alaska’s middle school students can be immersed in STEM opportunities through participation in Middle School Academy. The students chosen to participate in the all-expenses-paid academy are selected based on their academic records as well as essay responses within their applications.

“ANSEP is changing the lives of Alaska’s youth and empowering them to be true, impactful leaders. This opportunity will honor the intellect of Alaska’s first people and grow the capacity of that knowledge for 21st century leadership," Anchorage School District Superintendent Dr. Deena Paramo said.

The students are from 21 Anchorage middle schools including:
  • Alaska Native Cultural Charter School: Danaysia Craggette and Ranen Wasillie
  • Bayshore Elementary: Omar Adegbola, Daniel Cho and Alexis Cortez
  • Begich Middle School: Autumn Davis, Vernadette Fernandez-Alexie, Tristan Guinn, Ethan Roehl, Anissa Stephens and Pharrell Worthy
  • Central Middle School: K’Cee Greer and Hugh “Jake” Youngers
  • Clark Middle School: Kimberly Guthrie, Devon Joe, Trevor Kamkoff, Shaylin Moore and Raylon Noratak
  • College Gate Elementary: Keyshon Frost and Katelynn Houser
  • Goldenview Middle School: Ella Chythlook, Caleb Jacko and Aranea Oliveira
  • Hanshew Middle School: Kristi Anderson, Charla Garcia and Ianna Morris
  • Kincaid Elementary: Andre Bergerson
  • Lake Otis Elementary: Tyler Benton, Aidan Brower and Juliann Shugak
  • Mears Middle School: Alexander Bruce, Nizhoni Hiratsuka, Nike Mateaki, Kaydence Sara, Troy Senoran, Sophie Thiele, Lila Watson, Laela Welsh-Morel and Sean Wiles
  • Mirror Lake Middle School: Shandin Wendell
  • O’Malley Elementary: Johnathan Duke
  • Polaris K-12: Andrew Gebert
  • Rogers Park Elementary: Jackson Church
  • Romig Middle School: Kayleigh Piscoya
  • Sand Lake Elementary: Aimery Bailey
  • Stream Academy: Isaiah McPherson
  • Trailside Elementary: Kinsie Young
  • Turnagain Elementary: Victoria Shein
  • Winterberry Charter School: Emily MacRae
The January Middle School Academy comes on the heels of a visit from world-renowned marine biologist Dr. Sylvia Earle during ANSEP’s 2017 Celebration. As an oceanographer, explorer, author and leader of the first female team of aquanauts, Dr. Earle shared stories and experiences that inspired and captivated the attention of the students.

“After celebrating 22 years of ANSEP success earlier this month with an exceptional presentation by Dr. Sylvia Earle, we continue to look for ways to keep our students engaged and inspired while providing innovative ways to get them excited about STEM learning,” said ANSEP Founder and Vice Provost Dr. Herb Ilisaurri Schroeder. “Our goal is to engage students early and keep them on track for academic success, and we are grateful to our school district partners for helping us achieve this goal.”

The Middle School Academy is the first component in ANSEP’s longitudinal model, which strives to expose students early and often to STEM opportunities. ANSEP components continue to offer support to students through high school and into college undergraduate, graduate and doctorate programs. Since 2010, more than 75 percent of ANSEP students who have begun a University of Alaska undergraduate program in a STEM field are still enrolled and on track to earn their degree or have graduated. By year 2020, more than 3,000 ANSEP students will be on track for science and engineering degrees. To learn more about ANSEP and its components, visit www.ANSEP.net.