In the Loop
Press Release : Jul 2, 2015

High School Students Explore Art/Sci Intersections at the University of Florida’s First-Ever STEAM Quest July 12-17

Twenty-four students from across Florida will gather at the University of Florida (UF) July 12-17, 2015 for the university’s first-ever STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) Quest summer program. The program, presented by UF’s Center for Precollegiate Education and Training and the College of the Arts, offers rising 11th and 12th grade high school students opportunities to actively engage in various art and science disciplines to stimulate curiosity and appreciation for the range of college degrees and career opportunities available in these fields. Students become Gators for a week, experiencing residence life, visiting research laboratories and artists’ studios, entering the behind-the-scenes world of art and science museums and attending a variety of lectures and demonstrations.

“Throughout the country the STEAM movement is transforming institutions, corporations and the way people think by recognizing the value of integrating art and design into the STEM conversation,” said Lucinda Lavelli, dean of UF’s College of the Arts. “The arts provide key skills such as critical thinking and problem solving, creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration, and adaptability. Through STEAM Quest, the University of Florida joins the ranks of a small number of universities pioneering this type of programming for high school students.”

STEAM Quest participants will explore STEM fields, engineering and the arts with renowned scientists and artists from UF who are leading the way to preeminence at this research university. Faculty, staff and students from the following UF areas will participate: Center for Arts in Medicine; Center for Precollegiate Education and Training; Center for Safety, Simulation & Advanced Learning Technologies; College of the Arts; College of Engineering; College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; College of Medicine; Digital Worlds Institute; Florida Museum of Natural History; Harn Museum of Art; Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences; and the Particle Engineering Research Center. Santa Fe College’s Kika Silva Pla Planetarium will also participate.

“When we are training our future researchers, we hope to teach them creativity, empathy and understanding,” said Dr. Mary Jo Koroly, a faculty member in UF’s College of Medicine and director of UF’s Center for Precollegiate Education and Training. “The arts will help us in this mission.”

Some of the activities participants will have at this year’s STEAM Quest include: exploring experimentation through dance; learning about paint as an engineered system; the connection between mathematics and origami; a lesson in entomology and citizen science; and the examination of human anatomy and physiology. Feedback from this pilot program will be used to pursue funding opportunities for an interactive and integrative program for students who are interested in the intersections of the sciences and the arts.

Join the conversation online by using #STEAMQuestUF. To learn more about STEAM Quest, visit

About UF’s Center for Precollegiate Education and Training
The University of Florida’s (UF) Center for Precollegiate Education and Training (CPET) is a unifying organization that works with science research laboratories within the university to identify, coordinate and extend programs to high school and middle school teachers and students. All UF CPET programs are designed to link scientifically curious teachers and pre-college students with UF faculty and graduate students who are dedicated to preparing scientifically-literate citizens for careers in science, technology, engineering, arts and math. With over 50 years of science education and outreach experience, CPET collaborates annually with approximately 300 faculty volunteers, as well as with hundreds of educators from around the state. To learn more, visit

About UF’s College of the Arts
The College of the Arts is one of the 16 colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. The College of the Arts offers baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its three institutionally-accredited schools — the School of Art + Art History, School of Music and School of Theatre + Dance. The college is home to the Center for Arts in Medicine, Center for Arts and Public Policy, Center for World Arts, Digital Worlds Institute, University Galleries and the New World School of the Arts in Miami. More than 100 faculty members and approximately 1,200 students work together daily to engage, inspire and create. The college hosts more than 300 performances, exhibitions and events each year. Faculty and students also exhibit and perform at other local, national and international venues. To learn more, visit

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Media Contact
Leah Craig, APR, Public Relations and Marketing Manager
University of Florida College of the Arts
Office: 352.273.1489 | Cell: 904.419.3346