Thursday, November 1, 2012

Guest Blogger: Shelley Puckett from the Science Center of Pinellas

As you know, one of the two areas of major focus for the Florida Afterschool Network is the promotion of STEM curricula and activities into afterschool programs. We believe that quality afterschool programs offer a perfect setting for kids to get excited about science, math, engineering and technology.

On Monday October 29th, I (Larry Pintacuda, FAN CEO) had the good fortune to visit the Science Center of Pinellas County. I was astounded by the breath and knowledge of the staff and their commitment to helping kids get an appreciation for the sciences. So impressed that I asked Shelly Puckett, Director of Business Development for the Center to do a guest blog. It is my pleasure to introduce Shelly Puckett.

“There has never been a greater time for our Nation to focus on STEM education especially before/after/out of school.  The Science Center of Pinellas has been educating, exciting and engaging students with hands on programs for over 53 years.   

Students in grades K-12 experience the “ah ha” moment of excitement with programs that include:  Rocketry, Lego Robotics, CSI Forensics, Mouse Trap Mechanics, Weather, Petrology and much more.  After school and during the summer, students participate in programs that provide a real world application in science, technology, engineering and math.  The center has also built relationships with local organizations who provide industry experts as guest speakers to our students in the fields of engineering, technology, medical, forensics, manufacturing and more.  

Giving these students an opportunity to apply STEM in real world environments will encourage confidence in these disciplines, creating that “ah ha” moment."

For more information on the Science Center of Pinellas County, please visit

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