This program is open to all high school and undergraduate students who have an interest in learning more about STEM technologies, which can be applied to all majors and areas of study. No prior experience is required. Our program, which primarily targets incoming high school juniors and seniors and first and second year undergraduates, provides a unique opportunity where students will:
- research opportunities and hands-on experience earlier in their academic career
- gain real world experience that will strengthen their resume with employable skill
- create networking opportunities with other students, mentors, professors, industry professionals
We offer two tracks, both provide early, deep learning and hands-on project based research opportunities:
- Essentials, which is also known as Stage 1, will teach students the basics and acclimate them to our virtual reality technologies and communication platform, and
- Accelerated, which is also known as Stage 2, for those who are more advanced, highly motivated and ready to take on a challenge.
Stage 1 - every student must participate in our Virtual Reality Academy that will acclimate them to virtual reality technologies, as well as their communication platform, our safe and secure 3D virtual campus, Deep HoriXons. Students will benefit by gaining tangible technology skills, beginning with exposure to the virtual reality domain, and – more importantly – developing the essential “soft skills” that are valued by prospective employers.
Stage 2 offers more challenging, entrepreneurial research and hands on experiences for product prototyping projects sponsored by member communities and companies. Top graduates from Stage 1 are eligible to apply to Stage 2. At this level, students are prototyping projects. This experience is similar to what is offered only to upper-level classmen or graduate students.
All projects are team-based, which allows students to work with, and learn from, their peers. Peer mentors, recruited from the top tier of past sessions, will provide additional technical support. The program is also part-time and flexible.
Our students are asked to describe their experience as a student in Discovery Lab Global (DLG), describe the project they plan to work on, and to provide some advice to high school students thinking about applying for a project-based learning experience.
"It was with Discovery Lab Global where I recognized and built my competitive professional skill set. I was given the freedom to go out and solve exciting real problems involving Data Analytics. I worked in teams and was able to act as a leader among my peers, as well as collaborate in small sub teams so that we could make progress on the project at hand. Some of my teammates would later become my best friends. Through the internship I also had to communicate clearly and quickly with those around me. Discovery Lab Global provided me with a meaningful experience and pushed me to develop a competitive skill set."
Portfolio of Projects
Students will select from a portfolio of projects that involve STEM technologies that they are familiar with and interest them personally, which aids in their success. Many of the projects identified solve practical problems and/or strategic challenges that need to be solved. Some of the projects that students have selected to work on in the past are:
- Virtual Reality – using OpenSim, students may develop virtual reality projects for markets, propose layouts for physical spaces, training facilities or interactive exhibits
- Data Analytics – research and design a space where members can collaborate on data analytics, data visualization, etc.
- 3D Modeling/Printing – learn and gain experience creating 3D models using free software packages such as Blender
- Mobile Apps – using an Android operating system, learn the technology and create your own mobile app
- Wearable Technology – develop wearable technologies such as the Internet of Things demonstrators
- Cyber Security – a project-based approach to future cyber-security certification will be explored
- Autonomous Vehicles – explore how sensors, communications architectures, and geo-tagged data bases can assist autonomy
- And more…
"I have loved working at the Discovery Lab. Dr. Williams and his staff are very dedicated to the program. I have not only been able to use and strengthen my programming skills, but I have made some long lasting friendships."