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WDMCS Community Education Holds First Noche de Ciencias (10/08/2021)

Oct. 8, 2021 | West Des Moines Community Schools (WDMCS) Community Education partnered with the Iowa State University chapter of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) to bring a Noche de Ciencias to WDMCS’ Spanish-speaking families on Oct. 7.

WDMCS students in grades 7-12 and their families participated in activities and met Iowa State SHPE members and Latinx STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) professionals from Collins Aerospace, Corteva Agriscience, and John Deere at the event, held at Valley High School. Families also learned about the college and university system in the United States — including the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), scholarships, and more — in their home language.

“We were receiving feedback from ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) students and parents that the career exploration process and college admissions process felt overwhelming. They didn’t know where to start,” said Gianna Pugliese, WDMCS Community Education community outreach coordinator. “We’re very thankful for this partnership to bring these resources to our families. Additionally, making the event linguistically accessible to the families removed a lot of barriers.”

A family speaks with STEM professionals during the Noche de Ciencias. A member of Iowa State University's Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers chapter speaks with a WDMCS parent. A family speaks with a STEM professional the Noche de Ciencias.

Alexandra Wade