Episode 10: STEM Education in Frankfort

The Kentucky State Capitol buildingSTEM education is alive and well in the state capital, and Mark Harrell and Rebecca Logan are proof of that. Mark is the District STEM Coordinator while Rebecca is a 5th grade STEM teacher at Elkhorn Elementary. Both educators implement Project Lead the Way curriculum that integrates science with engineering, and both have seen great results in their classrooms.

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Josh talks with Mark and Rebecca about their experiences with teaching STEM, what activities they’ve had success with and why increased STEM literacy is vital to Kentucky’s future.


Episode 9: Kentucky Girls STEM with Sue and Melissa

National Girls Collaborative logoThe Kentucky Girls STEM Collaborative will host its annual conference Friday, October 12 at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green. The next day, SKyTeach will help facilitate a Girls in Science STEM Day at Snell Hall on the campus of Western Kentucky University. Together, the two events will reach out to girls and encourage them to pursue STEM disciplines in high school and college and work in STEM fields once they graduate.

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Josh talks with UK’s Sue Scheff and WKU’s Melissa Rudloff about the conference and the Girls in STEM day, and also why encouraging girls in STEM is vital to Kentucky’s future.


Episode 8: NASA Downlink with Jaleh Rezaie

International Space Station in orbitEastern Kentucky University, in partnership with Kentucky Educational Television (KET), was recently named one of the six NASA downlink sites where students will be able to communicate with astronauts aboard the International Space Station. The event, which takes place Jan. 11 on EKU’s campus, will feature a 20-minute question and answer session with the astronauts. Approximately 180 middle schoolers from EKU’s service area will be in attendance.

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Josh talks with Jaleh Rezaie – associate dean of Graduate Education and Research and executive director of the STEM-H Institute at EKU – about the NASA downlink program and the growing need for increased STEM awareness across Kentucky.


Episode 7: Ben & Carolyn with Central Kentucky Math Circles

IcosahedronBen Braun and Carolyn Troha are both involved with the Central Kentucky Math Circles, a group whose goal is to provide students with opportunities and encouragement to become passionate and excited about mathematics.

The CKMC offers two math circles: the high school math circle, which is open to all interested high school students across Kentucky, and the elementary school math circle, which is currently serving students at Tates Creek Elementary School.

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Josh talks with Ben and Carolyn about both math circles and the need for math programming in Kentucky. For more information on the CKMC, visit: http://www.ms.uky.edu/~circles/


Episode 6: Aaron & Brenon, Co-Founders of Digicrits

Digicrits co-founders Aaron & Brenon.Brenon Conn and Aaron Tribou are two young innovators from Murray and the co-founders of Digicrits. As described on their Facebook page, Digicrits “combines social networking with a web-based directory of qualified creative individuals, who wish to market and display their creative products and services to a vast array of fellow artists and design consumers.”

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Josh talks with Aaron and Brenon about Digicrits and their experiences as young innovators. Check out www.digicrits.com once the site launches August 3.


Episode 5: Tamara & Stephanie, Co-Founders of Inxpression

Inxpression co-founders Tamara Dickerson & Stephanie WardNorthern Kentucky University graduates Tamara Dickerson and Stephanie Ward started with an innovative idea: make the process of creating custom t-shirts easier and more affordable. That led Tamara and Stephanie to create Inxpression, a company that sells custom t-shirts out of a vending machine. If you’ve got five minutes and $20, an Inxpression machine can create a custom t-shirt with any design you like.

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Stephanie and Tamara talk about how their idea came about and where they are in the entrepreneurial process. They also share some advice with young innovators who might be on the precipice of turning their idea into an actuality.


Episode 4: Dr. Craig Schroeder, Director of See Blue STEM Camp

See Blue STEM CampThe See Blue STEM Camp was held June 11-15 at the College of Education building on the University of Kentucky’s campus. Under the direction of Dr. Craig Schroeder, who started the camp in 2010 at Jessie Clark Middle School in Lexington, the camp taught 70 6-8th graders about STEM through classes in neurobiology, astronomy, math, engineering and LEGO robotics.

In this episode of the Innovation Update, Josh talks with Dr. Schroeder about his camp and the need for summer programming in the STEM fields.


Episode 3: Rohit Shukla, CEO of the Larta Institute

Rohit Shukla“Global dispersion of talent, capital, ideas, technology and markets has made the game of innovation more complex and more exciting.”

Those words help describe the lecture given by Rohit Shukla, CEO of the Larta Institute, at the 8th Annual KIEC on June 1 in Louisville. The lecture was entitled “Innovation and Entrepreneurs: A Network-Centric Approach” and focused on a more global look at the process of innovation.

Mr. Shukla was kind enough to allow his lecture to be included as an episode of the Innovation Update. So in this third episode we break away from Innovate Kentucky’s state-centric look at innovation and embrace the notion on a much larger scale.


Episode 2: Goldwater Honorable Mentions Josiah Hanna & David Spencer

david and josiahThe University of Kentucky’s Josiah Hanna and David Spencer were recently named honorable mentions for the prestigious Goldwater scholarship. Hanna, a sophomore out of Lexington, majors in computer science and mathematics and has been researching artificial intelligence planning under uncertainty. Spencer, a junior from Paducah, is pursuing a chemical engineering degree. Spencer has been involved in research that has focused on nanoparticles and hydragels and their application in drug delivery.

In this episode of the podcast, Josh talks with both students about their research and why it’s important for young students – and Kentucky as a whole – to embrace innovative thinking.


Episode 1: Introducing Innovate Kentucky

Gatton AcademyThe Innovation Update is a podcast dedicated to telling the stories of innovators carrying the spark in Kentucky. Whether it be students developing new technology or some of the most accomplished STEM practitioners in the Commonwealth, these innovators will illuminate the path to Kentucky’s future.

The first episode of the Innovation Update features Corey Alderdice, Assistant Director for Admissions and Public Relations for the Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky.

Corey is one of the people responsible for securing a new J. Graham Brown Foundation grant that will help fund a new initiative called Innovate Kentucky. In this episode, Corey discusses the need for greater STEM awareness in the state and how Innovate Kentucky will address those needs.