STEM Jubilee
Posted on 05/19/2023
STEM JubileeThe STEM School hosted their fifth STEM Jubilee at Chattanooga State May 16-17, 2023 which served over 3,000 elementary school students.

The STEM Jubilee is a STEM-based event that includes science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) activities, games, and challenges at booths facilitated by STEM school students. The purpose of the STEM Jubilee is to engage Hamilton County elementary school students in a variety of STEM-related concepts through hands-on activities and to inspire STEM education. The event hosts 3,000+ Hamilton County elementary school students to take part in STEM elementary education experiences.

Tony Donen, principal of The STEM School, started the STEM jubilee in 2016 and has continued to grow the event throughout the years. Elementary Schools attend in four shifts a day to visit the over 135 activity booths.

Two or three seniors each year plan, organize, and run the entire setup and implementation of the Jubilee. This year those seniors are Alyssa McGhee, Taylor Donen, and Coral Quering. Principal Donen said, “They are completely in charge, administration is the back up. Developing leadership in students is the mantra of our school. It’s not about adults doing things, it's about kids learning.’’

The three Seniors have been planning this event for the last six months. After monthly and weekly meetings, Alyssa McGhee said, “We manage what booths are there, how many people are needed to manage each booth, how many volunteers we have, what materials we need for each booth, and around how many nurses we need for the number of students.” The seniors appreciated the responsibility of coordinating the entire event and thanked Dr. Donen and Mr. David, Assistant Principal of the STEM School, for letting them take the lead.

Each grade plays a part in the Jubilee. Freshman students either work a booth designed by Creative Discovery Museum or are paired with another STEM student to run a booth. Sophomores run a STEM booth they created earlier in the year during a PBL unit with the Creative Discovery Museum.
Juniors either run a booth they create, support a booth created by someone else, or act in the role of supervision to assist elementary students and teachers. Seniors take on a role of volunteering as they are available while preparing for graduation.

The first STEM Jubilee was held at Finley Stadium. Later, it was held at the River Park before finally relocating to Chattanooga States campus in 2018 for an opportunity for more student access.

Every year, The Jubilee takes place in the spring after state testing. A signup email is sent to all elementary schools during January- February each year. This year spots for schools to visit the Jubilee were filled in only two days.