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Honors and Awards

The Science House Earns Enduring Achievement Award

Three female students huddle around a tablet on a white table during an IMHOTEP Academy event at The Science House.

From organizing the North Carolina Science Olympiad to hosting programs that engage underserved communities and those with disabilities to introducing students to drone soccer, The Science House at NC State has inspired multiple generations of future scientists and engineers. Because of its broad outreach efforts, the organization has been recognized with the Center for Advancing Research Impact in Society’s (ARIS) Enduring Achievement Award. 

The ARIS awards recognize researchers and practitioners undertaking exemplary work in research and higher education. The Enduring Achievement Award specifically recognizes individuals, collaborations or organizations who demonstrate achievement in research engagement and societal impact. Awardees will be honored at the 2024 Summit in April 2024.

“Since its founding in 1991, The Science House, with the support of NC State’s College of Sciences and investment from all of NC State’s faculty, students, staff and donors, has endeavored to empower K-12 students and teachers to develop the knowledge, skills and mindsets necessary to develop future innovators in a rapidly changing, technology-rich, global society,” said Jason Painter, director of The Science House. “We have prioritized high-quality, student-centered programs focused on inquiry, evidence-based instructional practices, emerging technology, competition and problem-solving. As we approach 35 years of service to North Carolina’s K-12 students and teachers, we could not be more honored to win the ARIS Enduring Achievement Award.”

A student in the IMHOTEP Academy flies a drone as part of an activity at The Science House.
Students learn about horticulture at an event hosted by The Science House.
Students work on a science project during an afterschool program at The Science House.

The Science House bridges the resources of North Carolina’s largest research institution with K-12 schools to empower scientific literacy and discovery. Satellite offices across the state provide professional development, coaching services, STEM equipment and more, particularly to schools in rural communities. The organization also offers professional development programs to teachers. In addition, The Science House oversees the North Carolina Science Olympiad, plus a variety of summer camps and afterschool programs for K-12 students, especially those from underserved and underrepresented communities. 

At NC State, The Science House annually works with 30-40 faculty members to help write numerous proposals, highlighting projects’ broader impacts. Although the organization is situated within the College of Sciences, it works with faculty from across the university who hope to benefit formal and informal K-12 STEM communities across North Carolina.

Jory Weintraub, director of science engagement for the Office of University Interdisciplinary Programs, nominated The Science House for ARIS’ award.

“Through their creativity, expertise, resourcefulness, dedication and tireless efforts, The Science House has not only shepherded countless young North Carolinians into STEM degree programs and career paths, but has helped elevate NC State University to be one of the top-30 NSF-funded institutions in the nation,” Weintraub wrote in his nomination letter. “Their emphasis on diversity and inclusion, student advancement, teacher professional development and creative partnering with researchers over the last 32 years make them a clear and compelling choice for an ARIS Enduring Achievement Award.”

This post was originally published in NC State News.