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Inspiring Tomorrow's Innovators: Reflections on the Gordon A. Cain Center for STEM Literacy Summer Academy 2023

LSU STEM Summer Academy Fundamentals of Sound Design

In collaboration with LSU’s Upward Bound program, this year’s Gordon A. Cain Center for STEM Literacy Summer Academy provided a remarkable experience for high school students. Over the course of two weeks, more than 100 students hailing from Louisiana, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, New York, Texas, Wisconsin, and Honduras engaged in a diverse array of 10 STEM-focused courses.

The cohort showcased a vibrant mix: approximately half of the participants commuted while the remaining half resided in dormitories, embracing the chance to immerse themselves in LSU's campus life. Each course was carefully designed to offer hands-on learning encounters, with some also featuring short excursions. Notably, residential students seized the opportunity to explore captivating sites such as the Louisiana State Museum, the New State Capitol, and the Infinity Space Center in Stennis, Mississippi during the weekend.

As the program unfolds, the Cain Center envisions its growth, with plans to expand both the program and the range of courses in the forthcoming years.

I journeyed into teaching “Adventures in 3D Printing” this year and boy, did creativity bloom in the class! Guiding my students through transforming their Inventor or Tinkercad designs in a screen to objects in real life was the endeavor of my summer. They designed and 3D printed all kinds of objects: from skeletons to French buildings, even iPhone cases and prosthetic arms. I’m excited to see what we’ll be printing next year! 


Instructing the ”Sound Engineering“ STEM summer camp at LSU was a fun and rewarding experience. We worked on production tools and software, music theory and composition concepts, microphone usage for both live and studio settings, synthesis, field recordings, foley and sound design, gathering reverb samples from difference spaces around campus, and collaborating with the Game Design in JavaScript course to provide sound effects and soundtracks for their games.