by T.G. Kistler
Air Mobility Command Public Affairs
10/15/2013 - SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. -- The
Scott Air Force Base Science Technology Engineering and Math Advisory
Group recently announced the winners of their fall 2013 essay contest.
Twenty-three southwestern Illinois students wrote essays on "Why is
studying science, technology, engineering or math related subjects
important for you and students at your school?"
This was not just a writing exercise.
"Humans have insatiable curiosity and this is never stronger than when
we are young," said Dr. Donald Erbschloe, Air Mobility Command chief
scientist and Scott STEM Advisory Group chairman. "STEM provides tools
and programs to help encourage and sustain this passion."
The winners are: Rachel Holtmann, Pontiac Junior High School, Fairview
Heights; Destiny Johnson, Dorris Intermediate School, Collinsville;
Chloe Sax, Triad Middle School, St. Jacob and Matthew Halbrook,
"We are very proud of all the students who submitted entries for the
competition," said Andrea Green-Armstrong, a STEM group member. "All of
the essay submissions were well done and really gave a voice to the
importance of studying STEM fields for students to be successful in
future education and career endeavors."
Each student will receive a certificate of recognition from the Scott
STEM Advisory Group and the school receives a gift certificate for a Mad
Science show. Mad Science shows promote scientific learning through
child-friendly, theatrical demonstrations.
Green-Armstrong mentioned one essay specifically.
"The essay by Chloe Sax, from Triad Middle School, stood out because it
went further than benefits to individuals; it captured the big picture
point that in order to stay competitive with other countries, the United
States must have a citizenry that is knowledgeable in STEM fields," she
All fifth- through eighth-grade teachers, students, classes, clubs and
groups associated with a public or private school, home school network
or support group were eligible to compete as long as they resided in one
of the 10 southwestern Illinois counties surrounding Scott AFB.
Scientists, engineers and interested base members formed the Scott AFB
STEM Advisory Group in 2011 to advance STEM outreach and education in
southwestern Illinois. The group includes volunteers from U.S.
Transportation Command, Air Mobility Command, Military Surface
Deployment and Distribution Command and the 375th Air Mobility Wing.
In an effort to support the future workforce needs of the Department of
Defense, the National Defense Education Program provides funding for the
Scott STEM Advisory Group awards.