Isabella GEMS team members who attended the GEMS-U Expo on Feb. 8 were (front row, left to right) Katelyn Ramsey and Morgan Leonard; and (back row, left to right) Whitley Smith, Olivia Owens, Heather Posey, Cari Fondren and Savannah Higgins.
Isabella GEMS team members who attended the GEMS-U Expo on Feb. 8 were (front row, left to right) Katelyn Ramsey and Morgan Leonard; and (back row, left to right) Whitley Smith, Olivia Owens, Heather Posey, Cari Fondren and Savannah Higgins.

Archived Story

Isabella students selected for GEMS Expo in Birmingham

Published 4:33pm Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Isabella High School Girls Engaged in Math and Science (GEMS) team was selected for the fifth consecutive year to attend the GEMS–U Exposition at the McWane Science Center in Birmingham on Saturday, Feb. 8.

The team put together a project that studied the science of flight by learning to fly remote control airplanes in a flying club called Mustang Aviation at IHS.

Seven students ranging from 8th to 12th grade comprised the only team from Chilton County to be selected for the program this year.

“I was excited that they got selected again,” Isabella GEMS sponsor Jay LeCroy said. “It’s so difficult to get selected five years straight. These senior girls have been part of this since they were very young.”

LeCroy is currently one of LeCroy Career Technical Center’s Academy of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) instructors.

He and Jason Sosa helped institute a countywide robotics program at LeCroy that is modeled after the one he founded at IHS.

LeCroy said two GEMS team members, seniors Cari Fondren and Heather Posey, plan to apply their experiences from GEMS in college and in the workforce.

“We hope to get as many girls in the (STEM) program as boys because from what the industry is telling us, they would like to see more women engineers,” LeCroy said.

Other members of the Isabella GEMS team were Katelyn Ramsey, Morgan Leonard, Whitley Smith, Olivia Owens and Savannah Higgins.

Girls Engaged in Math and Science University (GEMS-U) is an exclusive statewide project designed to develop and disseminate high-quality materials and training resources from a panel of elite award-winning Alabama educators hosted by the Alabama Learning Exchange (ALEX), a nationally-recognized state web portal for teachers, students and parents.

The fifth annual GEMS-U Expo was designed to actively engage girls in science, technology, engineering and math.

Activities included a student project showcase, McWane Center exploration, an iMAX movie and guest speakers.

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