Sixth-graders can enter the North Alabama STEM Essay Contest, sponsored by North Alabama Society of Women Engineers. CONTRIBUTED

Women engineers sponsor STEM Essay Contest

MADISON – To show their interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math or STEM, sixth-graders can enter the North Alabama STEM Essay Contest.

Deadline to submit an essay is Jan. 17. North Alabama Society of Women Engineers is coordinating the contest, which includes cash prizes for the top three entries.

The contest is open to sixth-graders who attend public, private, parochial or home schools in Colbert, Dekalb, Franklin, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marshall or Morgan County. All sixth-graders are eligible, regardless of gender identity or type of school.

The North Alabama Society of Women Engineers is a network of female engineers and allies providing opportunities in northern Alabama for professional development and community outreach.

The organization empowers women to achieve their full potential in careers as engineers and leaders; expands the image of the engineering and technology professions as a positive force in improving the quality of life; and demonstrates the value of diversity and inclusion. (nal.swe.org)

Mazda Toyota Manufacturing is sponsoring the contest. The contest’s goal is to foster STEM interest in middle-school students.

The contest has an interesting premise: “Describe a new feature that you would add to a car. The feature can be aesthetic-based, safety-based or serve another function.”

The theme asks: “How would it work? What would this improve? How would this feature affect you personally? What technology exists today that could help you develop this?”

The essay must be 400 to 800 words. The essay filename must include the student’s first and last name. Acceptable formats are PDF, Microsoft Word and Google Doc.

To submit the essay, complete the entry form at bit.ly/NAL-STEM-Essay-Form and follow the instructions to either upload or email the essay.

Contest officials must receive all entries by Jan. 17 at 11:59 p.m.

Winning essays must follow contest guidelines:

* Adhere to the theme.

* Demonstrate an understanding of innovating in STEM, relate design ideas to current technology and show originality.

* Include one or more research sources from varying media (bibliography), and present the information in an organized, neat fashion.

* Use correct grammar, spelling and punctuation.

The top three place-winners and three honorable mentions will receive a STEM kit and a STEM book. Cash prizes will include first place, $150; second place, $125; and third place, $100.

For more information, email NALSTEMEssayContest@gmail.com, or visit nal.swe.org/north-alabama-stem-essay-contest.

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