Throughout my graduate studies at Georgia Tech, I have been heavily involved with outreach programs within and outside of Georgia Tech. In Jan. 2017, I joined the “Engineers for a Sustainable World Education Outreach” team in an effort in tutoring students at Henry W. Grady High School in Atlanta. The goal of this program is to help prepare minority high school students with their exams and classes. I became involved as an officer in student chapter organizations, including the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) (2017-2018) and Electrochemical Society (ECS) student chapter (2017 to present) at Georgia Tech where I contributed to organize various on-campus events to highlight research and teaching methods in STEM education. In my current role as the president of the ECS Georgia Tech student chapter, I have been leading various outreach activities to promote and encourage the culture of diversity and inclusion in the STEM program. We frequently participate in various outreach programs and demonstrate tangible electrochemistry-related systems for K-12 students in the Atlanta metropolitan area. For example, I led a group of engineers and scientists at Georgia Tech to demonstrate a proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell technology. These programs were targeted to promoting STEM education for diverse student groups with a particular emphasis on historically underserved and underrepresented minorities. In addition, on September 27, 2019, I co-organized the ECS local conference at Georgia Tech with participants from Auburn University, South Carolina, Pine Instruments, and Georgia Tech. Our organization activities are usually highlighted in the ECS interface magazine (please visit the Spring 2020 issue of interface magazine at this link, pp. 84-85).

Photo Credit: J. Fang

I led a group of Georgia Tech students to host an exhibit table at Saint Philip’s career resource ministry’s 12th Annual Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Service (STEMS) career fair for lower, middle, and high school students in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The event hosted 50 exhibitors and 300+ students in all grades. The focus was on hands-on activities in the exhibit hall.

Photo Credit: M. Nazemi

As a student researcher at Laser Dynamics Laboratory (LDL) at Georgia Tech, we have been frequently holding lab tours to highlight our research activities in the lab with underrepresented high school students in the Atlanta area. Our research group has been very active in educating under-represented minority students. We typically attract and train 2-3 undergraduate students in the NNIN or REU NSF summer program. More than half of these students are females or African-Americans. Groups from high schools around the Atlanta metropolitan area that serve the minority communities frequently come to our lab to learn about lasers and nanotechnology. We showcase our nanotechnology-related work with middle school and high school minorities. One of the goals of these activities is to encourage middle and high school underserved and underrepresented minorities to pursue a college degree and later graduate degrees at Georgia Tech.