Flinn Scientific, a flagship provider of science lab materials and safety and STEM solutions for the K-16 education market, has partnered with the Virginia Technology Student Association (Virginia TSA) to support and expand participation in virtual, intra-curricular student STEM competitions. Through the partnership, new Virginia TSA school chapters can purchase Flinn Scientific’s WhiteBox Learning program at an exclusive rate to be used by students as they compete in regional, state, and national competitions that test their engineering skills. Additionally, new Virginia TSA school chapters will receive incentives from Virginia TSA for engaging and exposing STEM students to learning, leadership, and career opportunities.
“In today’s virtual and in-person environments, WhiteBox Learning allows students to work like real-world scientists as they experience the engineering design process,” said Michael Lavelle, CEO of Flinn Scientific. “Our partnership with Virginia TSA will help us support and grow virtual competitions throughout the state, as well as expand Virginia schools’ use of our virtual engineering curriculum to support CTE and STEM education.”
Virginia TSA is the state affiliate of the national Technology Student Association (TSA) which is a national, non-profit career and technical student organization (CTSO) of middle school and high school students who are engaged in STEM. Since TSA was chartered in 1978, more than 5 million student members have participated in the organization’s competitions, intra-curricular activities, leadership opportunities, community service, and more.
All TSA competitions are aligned with STEM standards, 21st century leadership skills, and the U.S. Department of Education’s National Career Clusters Framework®. TSA competitions are categorized by a number of career pathways and provide TSA members the opportunity to apply technology and engineering skills in challenging and innovative ways as they work either individually or in a team.
“The partnership with Flinn Scientific will help support our mission of providing students throughout the state with high-quality learning opportunities that develop their college and career readiness, leadership, and overall STEM skills,” said Virginia TSA State Advisor B.J. Scott. “We anticipate the partnership with Flinn Scientific for WhiteBox Learning will entice more students and advisors to join our organization and encourage students to pursue STEM careers.”
WhiteBox Learning, which will be used by middle and high school students and Virginia TSA advisors during the virtual competitions and throughout the school year, is a web-based STEM learning system for middle and high school that brings real-world design to the classroom. Using the system, students can access, analyze, and save their designs anytime, anywhere, as well as collaborate with their peers on their design choices. WhiteBox Learning addresses various learning styles and provides all students with an engaging way to gain exposure to engineering design and the STEM career cluster for Career and Technical Education.
All of WhiteBox Learning’s standards-aligned applications provide students the opportunity to design and analyze a 3-D model, learn through simulations, and conduct countless design iterations before building the physical model to complete the learning experience. WhiteBox Learning‘s unique ability to allow for unlimited design iterations is a critical process in giving students a real-world experience. WhiteBox Learning also aligns with ITEEA’s new Standards for Technological Engineering Literacy (STEL) and Engineering by Design courses.
To learn more about WhiteBox Learning and the Virginia TSA partnership, visit www.flinnsci.com/Virginia-TSA-Whiteboxlearning. Additional information on the partnership was presented at a recent breakout session at the 2021 Virginia Association for Career and Technical Education Professional Development and Leadership Seminar.
The American Consortium for Equity in Education, publisher of the "Equity & Access" journal, celebrates and connects the educators, associations, community partners and industry leaders who are working to solve problems and create a more equitable environment for historically underserved pre K-12 students throughout the United States.