SMILE Challenge Weekend 2009

April 17th, 2009

It seems like only yesterday that I was in high school participating in the Science and Math Investigative Learning Experience (SMILE) Program. It was ten years ago (!), actually, in which I remember traveling to OSU to participate in the annual challenge weekend. Now in it’s 21st year (they held their 20th anniversary not too long ago) the SMILE Program hosted students from across the state and invited them to participate in various science and math related activities. This year’s theme was “What About Whales” and student teams were able to attend sessions on whale biology, marine acoustics, water pollution and climate change, just to name a few opportunities. (Speaking of whales, have you had the opportunity to see National Geographic’s footage on the first ever infant Blue Whale? It features OSU’s own Bruce Mate from the OSU Marine Mammal Institute.)

Some active SMILE students from Madras and Ontario who I had lunch with posed for photos while on campus. (See if you can spot OSU Admissions Bloggers James Miller and Stanley Yu!)

SMILE is one of several K-12 outreach initiatives based at OSU, all working on the premise that an interest in science or engineering starts at a young age and should be carefully nurtured. Other programs tap into parents or community members who are working scientists, or get OSU undergraduate and graduate students involved directly in K-12 outreach activities.

I had the privilege of speaking for a few moments to the students during the opening session as well as during lunch. Students came from everywhere in the state including Madras, Nyssa, Ontario, Chiloquin, Woodburn and Forest Grove just to name a few cities. Hats off to the SMILE staff for putting on another excellent program for students.


14 responses to “SMILE Challenge Weekend 2009”

  1. James says:

    Nice work, Stoller! Love the Jaws theme.

  2. alinur says:

    This is an excellent ideas. I want to interest to participate to this type of event.

  3. Jahir Kamal says:

    Very nice work. This Smile Theme is very nice.

  4. Melayu Boleh says:

    Thanks a lot with this info..Its help me to do my research on this topic!

    Thank you!

  5. Web says:


  6. Monkey Joe says:

    It is great what you guys are doing at Oregon State, I am really impressed. Keep up the good work

  7. Pete says:

    I would love to be there especially with your program on whales.

  8. Croatia says:

    LOL Eric, Jaws theme really made the video dramatic..

    Nice one 🙂

  9. lelik says:

    What a photo! Do you have a hi res pictures maybe? It would be awesome to have as desktop background!

  10. Alan says:

    Yes hi res pic would be great. I would love it on my desktop.

  11. Bling says:

    Whales are such special animals. I’m so glad there are so many whale lovers.

  12. harley says:

    Your SMILE program looks like the one we have in our U. It’s great for field trips.

  13. SMILE – What a nice name. 🙂

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