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Molokai Excels at STEM Conference

Hawaii STEM Conference News Release

On May 1-2, more than 1,000 students, educators, industry partners and community leaders throughout the state and the nation gathered for the 8th Annual Hawaii STEM Conference. The event is an empowering STEM event dedicated to engaging a new generation of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) innovators in Hawaii.

Among the attendees were about 50 students from Molokai Middle and High schools and their Hawaiian Language Immersion Programs (HLIP). Students from Molokai’s `O Hina I Ka Malama, taught by `Iolani Kuoha, opened the Hawaii STEM Conference with an oli.

The Molokai High School HLIP team of Kau`iwai Poepoe-Mollena, Kamahina Kaiama-Kanuha were named one of the Hawaii finalists for the ArcGIS Online U.S. School Competition, one of many STEM competitions that took place during the event. This national competition took place in every state, and this group was among four selected as finalists from Hawaii at the conference. Their work will be submitted to be judged with all the other finalists from across the nation. Each of the Hawaii finalists received $100 as a prize. The national winner will win an all-expenses paid trip to the International Esri conference held in San Diego, CA in July.

Presented by Maui Economic Development Board’s (MEDB) Women in Technology (WIT) project, the conference was held for the first time at the Hawaii Convention Center on Oahu. This year’s theme, “Download Knowledge. Upload Service,” invited students to demonstrate and showcase the skills and abilities they have gained to help create a thriving future, not only for Hawaii, but the world.

Students and teachers representing intermediate and high schools from every island across the state of Hawaii participated in this regional technology conference which featured more than 40 student breakout sessions, more than 30 teacher breakout sessions, 14 software competitions, a STEM playground, a formal awards banquet (“The STEMMYS), and exhibit presentations.

While this year’s conference excelled in engaging students and educators on a myriad of hands-on STEM activities, competitions, and access to the latest technologies; it was the overarching mission of the state’s largest STEM conference that brought home the true impact of STEM education.

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