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Community Engagement

How Do We Inspire Youth Towards STEM Education?

Dec 17, 2018 by IDEX Health & Science

To inspire local youth towards STEM education, a group of engineers and a product manager from our team collaborated to host an event at our Semrock facility for the Boys & Girls Club of Rochester, NY. At this event, youth were able to learn more about STEM and to specifically learn more in depth about the optics field. What is STEM?

STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. This teaching approach allows students to engineer solutions to problems and construct evidence-based explanations to real-world situations.

At this event, we shared our personal stories in relation to STEM, our professional backgrounds and described our roles at IDEX Health & Science. Then we provided a tutorial on light and optics, and specifically taught the youth how Semrock filters are used in life science research and healthcare. Next, we provided a tour of the facility and the youth loved the automated beveling robot on the production floor. Finally, we demonstrated how to see biological samples using a fluorescence microscope and Semrock filters. Each youth took turns using the microscope to view the various filters, as pictured below.  Many of the youth were captivated by the beauty of the vibrantly colored fluorescent cells.

The youths’ biggest takeaway was having a better understanding of what an optics business is and how large of an industry it is in the Rochester area. Being on a manufacturing floor was also a first for the kids and most importantly they all had a lot of fun. To continue supporting the youth development programs at the Boys & Girls Club of Rochester, NY, the IDEX Foundation donated $5,000.

Boys & Girls Club of Rochester, NY provides youth development programs that enable young people to acquire the skills and qualities needed to become responsible citizens and leaders. Specifically, the organization strives to be a safe place to learn and grow, to develop ongoing relationships with caring adult professionals, an environment to develop character and ultimately discover new opportunities for the future.