Tag Archives: education

O-RETiNAS 2017 Program

In its second year of grant funding (7th year for CIAN’s Native American focused Research Experience for Teachers programs) CIAN hosted eight educators of Native American students. These teachers participated in an 8-week summer program at the University of Arizona. This included multiple relevant workshops, a course in the College of Education through the Teachers in Industry program, an intensive research laboratory experience, and a unique industry experience at CIAN’s partner companies (Edmund Optics, Lam Optics, and the UA Tech Park).

 

Teacher School Taught at Subject & Grade Taught Mentor Project
Marjorie Beno Pinon Middle School 7th grade science Alan Kost Laboratory Robotics Distance Learning Education
Roger CrazyWolf Thoreau HS 9-12th science and health Jesse Little Supersonic Pressure Profiles
Rowena Ranoco Newcomb High School 10-12th chemistry, anatomy & physiology, integrated science Sasaan Showghi DIY Droplet Lenses from Three Commercial Polymers
Claire McKenzie Los Alamitos Middle School 7-12th, & Developmental Com. College mathematics and physics Bob Norwood Which Lens do I Use? The Characterization of Acylindrical Array Lenses
Dan Moreno Gresham School 9-12th chemistry and biology Jeff Pyun Nanomaterial Synthesis for Magneto-Optical Sensing Applications
Rolanda Francis Wingate High School 9-12th chemistry, physics, environmental sciences, intervention math & reading Dan Kilper Fiber Optic Temperature Monitoring for Water
Olivia Lansing East Valley Academy 9-12th biology, chemistry, physics, earth science, environmental science Euan McLeod Characterization of Functionalized Gold Nanoparticles with Gel Electrophoresis
Cynthia Demone Sherman Indian High School 10-12th biology and chemistry Alan Kost Laboratory Robotics Distance Learning Education

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CIAN would like to especially thank the many faculty and graduate student mentors who made this summer such a success. Additionally, CIAN gives special thanks to the industry partners hosting teachers throughout this summer.

Edmund Optics

Lam Optics

UA Tech Park

If you are interested in learning more about the O-RETiNAS RET program or applying, please visit our website.

Additionally, if you are interested in hosting teachers as an industry partner or helping in other ways as an industry partner, please contact us.

Summer 2016 RET Program Results

CIAN selected six teachers from schools across the country to participate in CIAN’s Research Experience for Teachers program. The selected teachers participated in laboratories at University of California San Diego, Columbia University, and Tuskegee University. Each teacher pursued a research project which he or she applied to the classroom and developed unique and innovative lesson plans.

Interested in learning more about the CIAN RET program or applying? Visit us here.

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UCSD

Brenda Minjares

Project: Teaching Digital Transmission of Information and Light Properties in High School Physics
School: Escondido High School
Grade & Subject: 9-12th; Physics, AP Physics, College/Career Readiness

Lesli Horowitz

Project: The Invisible World (Microscopy)
School: Kearny School of International Business
Grade & Subject: 8-12th; Biology & Computerized Graphic Design

James “JC” Morris

Project: Investigating Seawater pH Using Light Absorbance-based Photometry
School: Mark Twain High School
Grade & Subject: 9-12th; Biology, Chemistry, and Mathematics

Mentors: Dr. Yeshaiahu Fainman, Dominga Sanchez


Columbia

Sarah Wigodsky

Project: Investigating the Mach Zehnder Interferometer
School: Solomon Schechter School of Westchester
Grade & Subject: 11th & 12th; Physics & Electronics

Mentors: Dr. Keren Bergman, Christine Chen


Norfolk State University

Samuel Danquah

Project: Design and Fabrication of Planar MSM/VCSEL/MSM Triplexer
School: Norview High School
Grade & Subject: 9-12th; Technology of Robotics Design & Materials & Processes Technology

Rachel Watson

Project: Design and Fabrication of Dual MSM Photodetectors for Multi-Spectral Applications
School: Oceanair Elementary School
Grade & Subject: 2nd; Mathematics, Reading, Science, Social Studies, Writing

Mentor: Dr. Demetris Geddis

CIAN Student Retreat & Innovation to Market Workshop 2015

This year’s CIAN Student Retreat and Innovation to Market Workshop took place after the CIAN Annual Retreat. Two speakers were hosted to share their expertise on interview skills and entrepreneurship. Below, find George Kenney’s presentation and advice from Bri McWhorter on the “Top Five Interview Techniques.”

Access George Kenney’s Presentation

Part 1

Part 2

 

george-kenneyGeorge Kenney
Managing Director & Co-Founder
Shepherd Ventures

A Managing Director and co-founder of Shepherd Ventures, George has a strong technical background combined with extensive Wall Street and financial industry experience. He has been a successful manager in rapid growth environments, turning around struggling operations and developing and mentoring high technology companies. George has invested in a broad range of technology companies. He also runs an Entrepreneur’s Boot Camp which prepares CEOs to raise money.

Before forming Shepherd Ventures, George was CTO and Partner at Nicholas-Applegate, a money management firm in San Diego, where he directed technology and operations to grow and sell the company. Prior to Nicholas-Applegate, George was CTO and Managing Director at Kidder Peabody in New York City, becoming an expert in Investment Risk Management. Previously he held top information technology positions at Swiss Bank, Salomon Brothers and the American Stock Exchange. As Director of Research for North American Philips and co-founder of Digital Measurements Corp., George obtained numerous US and foreign patents.

George holds an MBA in Finance from Columbia University, an MSEE from Stanford University and a BS in Electrical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Additionally, he attended the Optic’s Program at London’s Imperial College and is a Graduate of Harvard University’s Industrial Management Program.  A noted technology futurist, George has been a keynote speaker at financial conferences on The Future of Technology. He has served as a Trustee for the San Diego Museum of Art and as pro-bono Chairman of the museum’s Investment Committee.  He has also served on the Board of Governors of the National Association of Small  Business Investment Companies and is currently  a board member of several technology companies.


TOP FIVE INTERVIEW TECHNIQUES

by Bri McWhorter, CEO and Founder of Activate to Captivate

1. BE MENTALLY PRESENT

Be here and now. It is the most important advice I can give. Miscommunications and missed opportunities occur far too often because people are distracted by their own thoughts and not focusing on what is happening in front of them. This is especially hard in an interview, when your body is filled with nerves and your mind is running through all the various ways this interview could play out. Instead of focusing on what could be, pay attention to what is.

2. CHANGE YOUR MINDSET

The first thing to do before entering an interview is to change your mindset. Instead of saying to yourself, “Don’t mess up” or “Please pick me,” enter the room believing you are already on their team. You and the interviewer are already colleagues. You are entering the room to get to know each other better, to exchange ideas and to see if you can work together to build something great. You are not entering the room to be grilled or interrogated. This is a supportive atmosphere where you can have a conversation and explore new topics.

3. YOU ARE ALSO INTERVIEWING THEM

It is important to remember that you are also interviewing them. You need to figure out if this is a work environment that you can thrive in. The last thing you want to do is move your whole life around for this job and find out that this is not a place you feel you can spread your wings in. That is why an interview is a conversation. Go in excited to explore new possibilities. You are seeing if you can add to their team and if their team is the right fit for you.

4. GO WITH THE FLOW

The most common remark I hear when I help people prepare for interviews is that they are afraid of not knowing an answer to a question. It is impossible to predict and prepare for every possible situation and question. Instead, breathe and be excited about this experience. Fun is the antidote to fear. I have my clients engage in various improvisation exercises to remind them that the unplanned can be fun.

5. PREPARE

Even though you can’t prepare for everything, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prepare. Do your homework. Know the company you are interviewing for. What is their mission statement? What are they currently working on? Were any articles about them released lately? With the internet at your fingertips, you have a vast amount of resources to consult before entering an interview situation. You also need to know why you are the best fit for this job. If you don’t know why you are ideal for this position, how can you expect others to believe you are?

Prepare the answer these questions:

  • Why you?
  • What sets you apart from the rest of the competition?
  • Why this job?
  • Why this company?
  • What previous experiences will help you succeed in this new position?
  • What questions would you ask if you were interviewing someone for this job?
  • What do you hope to accomplish with this position?
  • What questions do you have for the interviewer?

 SUMMARY

  • Stay mentally and physically present.
  • Change your mindset about the interview. See it as an opportunity to exchange ideas.
  • You are also interviewing them. You want to see if this is the right fit for you. Be sure you can thrive.
  • Go with the flow. Have fun.
  • Prepare what you can.

bri-mcwhorterBri McWhorter
CEO and Founder
Activate to Captivate

Bri McWhorter is the CEO and Founder of Activate to Captivate where she teaches communication techniques from an actor’s point of view. She specializes in Presentation Skills, Interpersonal Communications, Interview Techniques and is a Speech Coach. She is a Communications Consultant for UC Irvine. She teaches communication certificate programs on public speaking for graduate students and postdocs. She also works with faculty on upcoming presentations. She has a MFA in Acting from UC Irvine and a BA in Theater and Performance Studies from UC Berkeley.  She is a private speech coach and conducts group communication workshops for various companies and universities. For more information on Bri, please visit www.activatetocaptivate.com.

CIAN Summer Program Success Breakdown

Over the course of the summer CIAN universities hosted 65 students and teachers across eight CIAN universities. These are some of their stories…

Research Experience for Teachers (RET) Programs

Research Experience for Teachers programs are funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), are six-weeks long, and incorporate both a laboratory research component and classroom component. By the end of the six-weeks, the educators participating have produced a research poster about their project as well as a lesson plan which will be implemented in the new school year applying the science and technology they have learned.

Learn more about the RET program & how to apply.

University of Arizona

The University of Arizona hosted eight educators from Native American reservations across the USA. This summer, educators came from the following institutes, Fond du Lac Ojibwe School, Blackfeet Community College, Browning High School, Navajo Technical University, Santa Rosa Day School, San Simon Day School, Menominee Indian High School, and Winslow High School. Together, the selected teachers impact six tribes including the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Nation, Blackfeet Nation, Navajo Nation, Tohono O’odham Nation, Menominee Nation, and the Hopi Nation. Participants not only spent time performing research within their laboratories, but also participated in classes taking place at the American Indian Language Development Institute (AILDI) as well as completing a workshop on Native American Education with Dr. Greg Cajete, expert in the field. One participant shared his upcoming plans after the program,

My intentions for the upcoming school year are to incorporate some of the experiments that I was fortunate to witness with my students.  We will demonstrate the sun’s energy to produce electricity, cook food, produce hydrogen and improve our environment at the same time…this was a good way to spend six weeks and I would do it again in a heartbeat. ~ Julius Salinas (Fond du Lac Ojibwe School)

CSC_0074

UA ROKET Participants (L to R): Natalie Davis, Vincent Hood, Martha Rogers, Daniel Moreno, Leo Bird, H. Scott Halliday, Marla Lopez, Julius Salinas

If you are interested in learning more about the RET program for educators of Native American students please contact us.

Columbia

NancyYi-ColumbiaRET

Nancy Yi and Dr. Dessislava Nikolova measuring the transmission characteristic of a silicon photonic modulator

Columbia hosted Nancy Yi, who is a physics teacher at Brooklyn Technical High School. While at Columbia University Nancy participated in the Lightwave research lab of Prof. Keren Bergman.  She was mentored by Dr. Dessislava Nikolova on a project that aims to develop a silicon photonic system for secure communications using the quantum properties of laser light. Silicon photonic devices have very small dimensions and moreover they can be manufactured with the same technology used for computer chips. As a first step in the project, Nancy and Dr. Nikolova characterized the voltage dependence of the transmission characteristics of all modulators on the investigated chip.

UCSD

3-JenniferQuach-UCSD

Jennifer Quach from Gompers Preparatory Academy spent the summer in Dr. Yeshaiahu Fainman’s laboratory. Her project titled, “Investigating Light and Their Chemical Properties” aims, “to understand light and its properties by explaining the similarities and differences between element spectroscopy and how that connects to their understanding of the atomic energy levels and photons emitted from excited state to ground state.” Using goals of the Next Generation Science Standards Jennifer hopes to see students forming a stronger foundation of the periodic table and its characteristics.

NSU

BillEvans-NSUBill Evans teaches Algebra II and Physics at Booker T. Washington High School in Norfolk, Virginia. This summer he investigated “Prism-Coupled Waveguides” with Dr. Demetris Geddis and Lawrence O’Neal at Norfolk State University. Branching off of his summer project Bill will apply the new knowledge to have his students create a circuit using Snap Circuits Kits and then apply knowledge from their understanding of the quadratic equation.

This experience has re-energized me as a teacher, made me much more aware of the quality of work that students need to be capable of performing in an engineering program, and has connected me to a wealth of human resources to mentor, coach, and tutor my students…This has been so powerful! My students will not believe “What I did on my summer vacation.” ~ Bill Evans (Booker T. Washington High School)

Tuskegee

Marie Lemon teaches 6th grade at Greenville Early College in Greenville, SC. This summer she spent 6-weeks in the lab of Dr. Naga Korivi and Dr. Li Jiang.

My goal is to infuse aspects of the lab’s research in my projects planned for this school year.  This lab has been full of invigorating activities and I have been absorbing ideas from the professors and engineering lab students.  One might conclude that 6th grade is too young to benefit from such an experience.  To the contrary… ~ Marie Lemon (Greenville Early College)

4-MarieLemon-Tuskegee-editMarie’s project focused on Smart House Technology incorporating Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) and alternative sources of energy (fruit juice, saltwater, and solar panels) to wire the house. The concept of using photons in LEDs to send signals in devices, make connections, and do work in the process introduces and teaches circuits and electricity to 6th grade students. Through this work, students will continue to build on 21st Century skills; such as, collaboration, communication, and digital literacy necessary for college readiness.

Read more about her experiences and on her blog.

CalTech

Two teachers participated in the CalTech Research Experience for Teachers program. Joe Hartley from Larchmont Charter School and John Smallenburg from John Muir High School spent six weeks in the laboratory pursuing state-of-the-art research projects with faculty mentors.

Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Programs

Research Experiences for Undergraduates Programs are funded by NSF, ten-weeks long, and students participate on a research project as well as in professional development opportunities to prepare them for graduate school.

Learn more about the Integrated Optics for Undergraduate Native Americans REU program & how to apply.

Learn more about the Integrated Optics for Undergraduates program & how to apply.

University of Arizona

iouna photos

L to R (top): Robert Castellanos, Galveston Begaye, Lisa Willis, Brandon Jesus (bottom): Conrad Begay, Desiree Saraficio, Christian Bartholomew, Vernon Kaye

Through the NSF Research Experience for Undergraduate program CIAN at the University of Arizona hosted eight Native American Undergraduate students. Students hailed from four different tribes including the Colorado River Tribes, the Navajo Nation, the Tohono O’odham Nation, and the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe. Projects included developing a smartphone-based ocular imaging system, investigating lead and arsenic exposure risks to a community through analysis of airborne particles on children’s playground equipment, and polarized Raman microscopy of aligned carbon nanotubes; among many other exciting projects. The students also participated in the Graduate College’s Undergraduate Research Opportunities Consortium (UROC) Program to develop skills that will be essential for applying to, being accepted into, and succeeding in graduate school.

Learn more about the Integrated Optics for Undergraduate Native Americans REU program & how to apply.

Read about past students’ experiences; Solianna, Scott, & Robert.

UCSD

UCSD hosted two undergraduate students this summer in Dr. Yeshaiahu Fainman’s laboratory. Caylin VanHook attends Louisiana Tech University where she studies electrical engineering and physics. This summer her project was “Numerical Techniques in Near-field Optics and Materials.” Andrei Isichenko attends Cornell University and studies engineering and physics. His project was “Capacitvely-induced free-carrier effects in nanoscale silicon waveguides for electro-optic modulation.” Caylin and Andrei also participated in the UCSD STARS program which enabled them to attend a GRE preparation course, attend graduate school preparation workshops, present their research at the UCSD Summer Research Conference, and learn from other opportunities throughout the summer.

CalTech

Two students participated in the CalTech REU program. Aadith Moorthy researched “Vacuum Technology for Applications in Optoelectronics and Novel Environments.” Aadith studied miniaturized vacuum triodes and vacuum-based photodetectors, both of which utilize field emission of electrons. As a result of the project Aadith stated in his abstract,

This photodetector will help forward CIAN’s mission of creating transformative optical technologies by allowing for high speed conversion of an optical signal to an electronic one. Overall, the results substantiate the promise of field emission in vacuum technologies for novel applications and environments.

Daniil Lukin studied “Design and Fabrication of Low-Voltage Turn on Vacuum Triodes.” For his project he worked with four-terminal planar vacuum triodes with emitter-collector gaps under 10nm, fabricated out of tungsten on sapphire. This technology is expected to operate at high temperatures and high frequencies which will be useful for integration with on-chip photonics.

Columbia

LilianChik-ColumbiaREU

Lillian Chik presents her project at the Columbia REU Symposium.

Lillian Mun Shin Chik was mentored by Ph.D. student Christine Chen on implementing dynamic control of a Silicon photonic switch fabric through a computer interface, to improve system robustness with power resource allocation. Chik says, “For this project, I learned in detail about optical communications for high-speed networking, focusing primarily on the photonic packet switching architectures.” Jacob performed system optimization on the programmable wavelength locking firmware and software for the lab’s high performance silicon photonic link and switch systems. Jacob’s first deliverable was a modification to FPGA based signal processing of wavelength locking feedback signals – he replaced an unstable moving average filter with a more stable (fewer transients) median filter. Additionally, Jacob explored further automation of the system and began development of a lock-and-memorize protocol. Lillian and Jacob attended graduate school and professional seminars as part of the REU program, which culminated in a presentation to Columbia NSF-sponsored Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) peers and researchers.

Young Scholar High School Research Programs

The CIAN Young Scholar High School Research Program occurs over the course of the summer (although students are also encourage to apply for the school year). Students have a unique opportunity to enter a top-tier research laboratory and encounter the research process first-hand. Placed with a mentor, the student pursues a designated project and develops a research poster to present his or her progress.

Learn more about the Young Scholar High School Research Program & how to apply.

Tuskegee

At Tuskegee University, four students in grades 10 to 12 from Booker T. Washington High School participated in the CIAN sponsored summer REH outreach program (Young Scholars Program) from June 8 to July 3, 2015. They conducted research on two projects at the Microelectronics Laboratory at Tuskegee University under the guidance of CIAN faculty Dr. Li Jiang, Dr. Naga Korivi and CIAN master’s and undergraduate students. Two reports and two posters were produced as a result of the research activities.

tuskegeeyoungscholar-editThe projects are, “Optical waveguides from 3D printed templates” under the supervision of undergraduate research assistant Alexis Pruitt and “Optical lens from 3D printed templates” under the supervision of undergraduate research assistant Steven Gaillard. The high school students received lab training from research associate Lamont Henderson and their project supervisors as well as many other training and educational opportunities provided by the program.

Columbia

Columbia hosted one Young Scholar High School Researcher student from Union County Academy of Information Technology. He spent the summer learning about the research process and participating in a research project in Dr. Gil Zussman’s laboratory under the mentorship of graduate and undergraduate students. His project focused on improving the design of a web-based tool for the dynamic presentation of simulation results. The project resulted in a demo that showcases routing in node and the hope is that in the future, there will b other discoveries made to connect the angular front-end to the node back-end of the website.

CalTech

CaltechYSCalTech’s Young Scholar’s program is newly implemented in the laboratory of Dr. Axel Scherer and branches off of success had with the CalTech Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program. Previous RET teacher, Keith Russell, brought his experience in the lab, Summer 2013, straight to his students in the classroom as well as carrying out regular visits with his students to the CalTech laboratories. This summer, two students of John Muir High School were selected to participate in the five-week program. Three weeks were spent doing labs now used in an undergraduate semiconductor fabrication course to give the students experience with nano-fabrication. For the last two weeks the students carried out their own research project.

As a final note, CIAN would like to thank the many faculty, staff, and students that make these programs possible. Without their dedication and drive these programs would not have such a significant impact across so many students and educators around the country. Thank you.

Where Did They Come From?

This summer’s participants came from all over the USA!

Yellow = CIAN Universities
Purple = REU Program
Orange = RET Program
Red = Young Scholar Program

EASIS Summer Camp 2015

Once again, CIAN at the University of Arizona, hosted 16 Navajo and Hopi Native American High School students from Winslow Unified School District in Winslow, AZ. This year’s Expect Academic Success in STEM (EASIS) summer camp took place between June 22-26 and was five days of fast-paced optics and engineering activities! The summer camp would not have been possible without the huge amount of support from CIAN and UA College of Optical Science faculty, students, and staff. Additionally, we received exciting giveaways for the students from CIAN IAB partners VPIphotonics and Northrop Grumman.

See the slideshow below for a sample of the many activities students participated in to learn about optical engineering.

Interested in participating in EASIS 2016? We’re accepting applications for all students!

Interested in supporting EASIS 2016? Contact us!

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My RET Experience @ Tuskegee

Why a summer at Tuskegee?

I am a 6th grade middle school science teacher from Greenville, South Carolina, at Greenville Early College, “Home of the Eagles”.  I wanted to be here at Tuskegee University; to observe and learn from Dr. Korivi and Dr. Jiang’s Microelectronics’ lab, in hopes of engaging my students this year.  My goal is to infuse aspects of the lab’s research in my projects planned for this school year.  What an experience thus far!

This lab has been full of invigorating activities and I have been absorbing ideas from the professors and engineering lab students.  One might conclude that 6th grade is too young to benefit from such an experience.  To the contrary…

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Designing wave guides to control an optical path, which will result in my students’ use of diodes for their projects this year.

2-dsc00101-circuit-board

New materials for capacitors, where my students can look to the future for outerwear to charge their cellphones and iPods.

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UCLA’s Explore Your Universe

Every year at the University of California, Los Angeles a gigantic event is hosted by all the science departments and student clubs. And the CIAN students at UCLA have a big hand in making this day a reality.

This year, the Explore Your Universe event was a great success. Over 5,000 attendees explored different science booths from UCLA featuring a variety of exhibits ranging from flash freezing objects using liquid nitrogen (chemistry), launching model rockets, to using new robots on different planets (astronomy). Talks were given by guest lecturers, and near the end of the event, the planetarium was open for viewing the night sky.

The booth set up by CIAN students and OSA/SPIE Student Chapter members at UCLA was a premier location to see and one of the booths that required a visit to win a prize. CIAN students and OSA/SPIE Student Chapter members at UCLA kept themselves busy for 6-hours straight teaching children and adults alike about optics. They had a blast using the optics demonstrations provided in the CIAN duffle bag. The tools were so effective that even parents and teachers asked where they could purchase some of the demonstrations to teach their kids!  People of all ages were present with most of the kids from 5-16 years.

cejo.pngCEJO LONAPPAN – PHD STUDENT, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELES

Cejo Konuparamban Lonappan is a Ph.D.student at the University of California, Los Angeles, working under the guidance of professors, Dr. Bahram Jalali and Dr. Asad M. Madni. His research interests include the design and development of real-time high throughput instruments, high speed and RF circuits and systems, integrated photonics, and optical communication networks. He developed the real-time time-stretch (TiSER) technology which was used at the CIAN Testbed for Optical Aggregate Networks (TOAN) test-bed to demonstrate rapid optical performance measurement to enable agility in optical transport networks. He received the 2014 IEEE Instrumentation and Measurement Society Graduate Fellowship Award. He is an active member of the OSA and SPIE student chapters in UCLA and various IEEE societies.

DANIEL LAM – ALUMNI, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELES

Daniel Lam received his PhD degree from UCLA in Electrical Engineering under the guidance of Professors Bahram Jalali and Asad M. Madni.  He is currently working at Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems.  His current interests are high speed measurements, fiber optic telecommunication networks, radar, and laser optics.  While with CIAN he worked on the Testbed for Optical Aggregate Networks and time-stretch technology. He is an active member in spreading optics awareness through CIAN outreach and the OSA/SPIE Student Chapter at UCLA.