STEM Opportunities in Our Own Backyard
Vol.9 Issue 1

By Ryan Temple, Computer Scientist,
Member of the Aeronautical Center’s Employee Development Program (AsCEnD) Co-Hort #2

College students in classroom environment

As professionals working in aviation, we know how important Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) is to our daily lives. Many of us got into aviation and aeronautics due to an intense interest in STEM. It can be a challenge however, to convey the importance (and fun) of a career in STEM to our children. No matter what we do, it seems that sometimes our kids find it "boring" because "that’s just what mom/dad" does. Thankfully, Oklahoma City has many opportunities for kids of all ages to learn about STEM. Here are a few options to get your child started on the path of discovering the excitement of STEM.

  1. The Day Trip: Science Museum Oklahoma
    Science Museum Oklahoma

    While many Oklahomans may know it as the "Kilpatrick Center" or the "Omniplex," the Science Museum Oklahoma has been a part of OKC life in one form or another since 1958. The current facility was built in 1978 and houses hands-on exhibits about everything from physics to chemistry, and aviation to agriculture. They have daily planetarium shows and offer live science shows and exhibitions. They also host birthday parties (some involve liquid nitrogen and ice cream) and have seasonal day camps available during school breaks.

  2. The Adventure Option: iFly Indoor Skydiving
    iFly logo

    If you are craving a bit more adventure, why not take the kids and try indoor skydiving? iFly gives both children and adults the chance to skydive without the need to jump from a plane. If you’d prefer a group experience (birthday party, Girl/Boy Scout troop, etc.) they offer a STEM presentation for groups - explaining the physics of flight in the skydiving experience. For those needing additional physical assistance with the indoor skydiving experience, iFly offers their "All Abilities" program

  3. For Competitors: Oklahoma Technology Student Association
    Oklahoma Technology Student Association

    For a competitive experience that ties STEM experiences among Middle and High Schools in Oklahoma, check out the Oklahoma Technology Student Association (TSA). Students can form teams and compete in diverse subjects including biotechnology, drone flights, writing stories, building robots, and much more. For a full list visit Many schools already have existing TSA chapters. A current list is available at

  4. History and Science: The Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum
    Science Museum Oklahoma

    In addition to remembering the tragedy of the Oklahoma City Bombing, the Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum provides an opportunity to share the lessons learned from the catastrophe with the world. The museum offers a 3-hour Uncover-Discover STEM Lab with paid admission. The interactive experience integrates STEM concepts with history, stimulating learning and connecting the past with the future. Through large touch-screen tables, students work independently, then come together as a group to find solutions to challenges, representing what the OKC first responders had to do when saving lives and investigating the crime.

Child engaged in learning
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