The School for Science and Math at Vanderbilt will be a joint Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) and Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) venture, linking the expertise of the university to highly capable students in grades 9-12. The curriculum will focus on interdisciplinary science and the development of critical thinking skills and methods of inquiry necessary to conduct scientific research. Admission to the program will be based on grades, standardized test scores, recommendations, interviews, written statements, and projects. The School will also seek the """"""""uncommon scholar"""""""". Students will attend the School one day per week on the Vanderbilt campus while continuing their traditional education at their zoned school during the academic year. Scientists and scientists-in-training will work together with students to create a strong scientific learning community. Dedicated School Ph.D. instructors will form the faculty core, while Vanderbilt research faculty will provide mentorship in research internships and instruction in advanced electives. An adjunct teaching corps of postdoctoral fellows, advanced graduate students and retired scientists will generate complementary instruction. One-day coursework will consist of core lessons, laboratories, and enrichment including site visits, seminars, journal clubs, and interactive videoconferences to integrate content across an interdisciplinary, sequential curriculum. Summer research projects will grow from team to independent work culminating with their centerpiece summer research internship following 11th grade. Students will work intensively with faculty scientist mentors to carry out an independent research project, while attending supplemental breakout sessions with the adjunct postdoctoral corps. As seniors, students will submit to national science competitions and journals. They will also translate their research into community outreach projects. Formative and summative evaluation of the School will be completed by external evaluators. The establishment of this School will contribute highly qualified scholars into the academic science pipeline, advance the scientific professional workforce, and produce citizens who are well-informed about science- related policies and issues.
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