STEMCON electrifies the College of DuPage

Lucas Koprowski, News Editor


As the sledgehammer smashed into the cinder block laying on top of a woman between two boards of nails, the audience fell into awe as the concrete block became shards of rock and dust that scattered all over the stage. The two College of DuPage faculty on stage lifted the board of nails off of the woman to find her completely unscathed to showcase the scientific properties of the law of conservation of energy.

The experiment was just one of many demonstrations as award-winning rocket scientists and Fermilab experts flooded the halls of College of DuPage with demonstrations of their skills this past weekend. The idea was to show the next era of students the wonders of careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

COD chemistry major and MC of the event Cody Castle believes that STEMCON is getting the next era of S.T.E.M. students involved with both the college and the field.

“This is an absolute team effort between the COD community and anyone else who would like to show,” said Castle. “It’s a fantastic showing, and I’m so excited. I was not expecting it to be this large and expansive.”

The event hosted demonstrations from all the S.T.E.M. departments at COD, such as the bed of nails experiment from the physics department, a weather balloon launch from the meteorology department and the engineering club showed off the student-built robot picking up objects and bringing them to audience members at the beginning of every hour during the event.

There were also other colleges and organizations demonstrating and promoting their programs. The University of Illinois at Chicago automotive engineering society Motorsports showed off the vehicles the club build from scratch.  As well, SimplyFly, a flight school, showed off one of the planes they train their students with and gave a presentation on the aerodynamics of flight.

The convention was funded through a grant from the Illinois Community College Board and partly through the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006.