The ASSIST Center Pre-College Education Outreach Program

The ASSIST Center has developed strategic outreach partnerships with 11 middle and high schools to enhance teachers’ engineering content knowledge and teaching methods, bring nanosystems engineering concepts into the classroom, involve high school students in ASSIST research, and thereby increase the diversity and enrollment of domestic students in university engineering degree programs.

Through these partnerships, the Center seeks to:

  • Develop integrated pre-college teams to stimulate student interest and diversity in engineering careers;
  • Provide teacher workshops and Research Experiences for Teachers (RETs) to enhance teachers’ knowledge of engineering/nanotechnology concepts and careers as well as their ability to incorporate engineering activities in the classroom;
  • Engage ASSIST students in pre-college outreach activities to improve their ability to bring the excitement of engineering to younger students;
  • Fund a Young Scholars Program that pairs promising high school students with university student mentors for summer research experiences;
  • Engage middle and high school students in fun engineering events on university campuses to encourage increased interest and diversity in science and engineering majors and careers.

For more information, please visit


Dr. Gail Jones
Principal Investigator

Gina Childers
Graduate Research Assistant

Elysa Corin
Graduate Research Assistant

Rebecca Hite
Graduate Research Assistant


Penn State University

Florida International University

University of Virginia