A project of NYU Tandon School of Engineering’s Center for K12 STEM Education, Science of Smart Cities (SoSC), introduces middle and high school students, and their teachers, to engineering, science, computer science and technology that make cities more livable, efficient, sustainable and safer. Hands-on activities, demonstrations and experiments integrate STEM concepts, showing how those concepts are applied through engineering disciplines in cities today, and how they might be applied in cities in the future. Participants learn about the scientific method and research practices, and SoSC connects participating students to each other, and to college age near-peers, through teamwork and mentorship.
The on-campus program generally also features guest lectures and field trips, and participants work with professional actors from the Irondale Theater Company, using improvisation techniques to develop their public speaking and presentation skills. SoSC culminates when participants bring together their new engineering and technology skills and create and present a model of their own “smart city” at a public SoSC Expo.
The SoSC curriculum, and its activities and experiments, show how fundamental STEM concepts are applied in city planning, infrastructure development and the systems that cities, and their citizens, rely on through four instructional units: energy, urban infrastructure, transportation and wireless communications. NYU School of Engineering graduate and undergraduate students instruct the program, highlighting innovations in areas like connected devices, smart cars, renewable energy and sensors (and the use of data they collect). Over 1,000 middle and high school students have completed the program and 30 teachers have been trained in the curriculum.
Science of Smart Cities was originally designed in 2012 by NYU students in engineering, mathematics and education students. From a pilot that year, SoSC has expanded beyond its initial on-campus summer camp program format and grown in scope and scale. We created a follow version called ieSoSC, run the program with nonprofit and school partners in the after-school hours, and in 2015 and 2016 partnered with the New York City Department of Education’s STEM Summer in the City initiative to train teachers and deliver the program off-campus, in all five boroughs.
Dozens of NYU engineering undergraduate and graduate students have been instructors and their efforts refined the curriculum, added new lessons, and identified the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and Common Core State Standards in Math (CCSSM) the program meets.
We are extremely grateful for financial support in 2018 from National Grid, Consolidated Edison, Northrop Grumman Corporation and The New York Building Foundation. These institutions are making this years programming in SoSC and ieSOSC possible and their support has driven our on-campus program’s ongoing development, success, and innovations. We would also like to acknowledge the New York City Department of Education and The Fund for Public Schools.
Start here to learn details about our summer 2018 programs Science of Smart Cities and Innovation, Entrepreneurship and the Science of Smart Cities on the NYU Engineering campus, and to submit an application.
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