Associate Professor of Kinesiology Christopher Rhea will serve as director and Senior Academic Professional of Mathematics and Statistics Tracey Howell will serve as associate director of UNCG’s RISE Network, now in its tenth year.
The RISE Network is a coalition of educators and researchers involved in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education. The network provides access to STEM funding and research opportunities, promotes working partnerships, and sponsors special events such as workshops and guest speakers.
RISE has been a part of many initiatives from enhancing support for STEM education in K-12 classrooms to Science and Technology and Math Preparation Scholarships (STAMPS) awards for UNCG students to the initial conception of the campus wetlands.
As Rhea and Howell assume the leadership of RISE, succeeding previous directors Malcolm Schug and Lynn Sametz, they are looking toward increasing outreach and collaboration, at UNCG and beyond – to university partners within the city and across the state.
“One thing I really like about UNCG is that there’s a real emphasis on collaboration – across departments, across units, and across all different levels. And STEM is a real key player in that,” says Rhea.
Along with continuing their small grant programs, speaker series, and networking events, such as research “speed-dating,” they plan to increase RISE’s social media presence and amplify programming that relates to graduate students to prepare them for their careers following graduation.
Another goal is to reach across disciplines to widen the perceptions of what disciplines could be included in the network.
“RISE is for a broader range of people,” says Howell. “We’d like to bring in more folks from more departments.”
Rhea and Howell are also looking toward the next Science Everywhere festival, which RISE has a significant role in planning and executing. It will be held April 25, 2020.
To learn more about the RISE network, explore the website here: https://rise.uncg.edu.
Story and photograph by Susan Kirby-Smith