MESA delivers an after-school program that prepares underrepresented students for STEM careers in the 21st century. Washington State MESA enriched curriculum ensures rigor, relevance and responsiveness in support of the next generation science standards and is delivered through project-based learning using best practices in instructional strategies to prepare students for careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). In addition to “MESA STEM Activities Playbook” MESA enrichments introduces four new strands:
- Sustainability. Sustainable Energy in the 21st century.
- Global Health. Maintaining a healthy global ecosystem that sustains food production, enhances water and air quality and promotes human health.
- Prosthetics and Robotics. Robotics and prosthetics excites students about STEM and allows them to explore the research, in health care, industry and scientific work and work on solutions to real problems in their communities.
- Aeronautics. Students develop deep understanding of mathematical concepts and explore how this knowledge is used in industry to improve aeronautical engineering and support air transportation.
The MESA K-12 Program offers:
- Individual Academic Plans (IAP). The plans help K-12 advisors and counselors plan and monitor individual student progress.
- MESA after school clubs. These classes are held after the school day, and allow advisors (usually math or science teachers) to work with students on academics and MESA activities. This class is project oriented and includes research, oral and technical presentations.
- Tutoring, SAT and, PSAT. Engineers, scientists and colleges students serve as tutors and mentors for MESA students. This helps students understand mathematical and scientific concepts, to maintain high grade point average. Advanced MESA students who have excelled in their courses may be hired as peer tutors. Students work with tutors to review and prepare for SAT and PSAT tests and they learn the most effective techniques for academic achievement.
- Study skills training. Students learn the most effective techniques for academic achievement. MESA students have the opportunity to learn in independent study groups. These groups are organized and supervised by MESA Advisors, and they provide a supportive environment for effective learning.
- MESA Day Academies. These academies prepare MESA students for hands-on math and science competitions at local and regional levels. They give students a chance to meet like-minded students and vie for awards. In Summer Enrichment and Saturday Academies, students in grades seven through twelve are encouraged to participate in programs in mathematics and science. On Saturdays, students gain valuable skills and knowledge as they participate in a variety of hands-on engineering and science projects.
- Field Trips. MESA students have contact, with engineering and science professionals who are working with technical projects through field trips and classroom visits. These include visits to industrial sites, research centers, universities, engineering firms, computer centers, and other locations where engineers, scientists and technical professionals are employed.
- Scholarship Incentive Awards. Students who maintain B+ averages in advance-level preparatory mathematics, science and English courses can earn scholarship support while still in high school.
- Summer Math Scholars Program. This is a 2-5 week program designed to give incoming freshman a chance to start high school above grade level in their math classes.
- Career and college exploration. Guest speakers and field trips show students different college and career options.
- Parent Leadership Development. Parents learn how to become effective advocates for their children's academic success. They develop skills that help them navigate successfully within school systems and learn how to access programs and support for their children.
- Teacher Development Opportunities. Annual Academies and additional professional development workshops are offered for MESA pre-college Advisors (teachers). They learn through using hands-on approach and develop new techniques and strategies to engage students in math and science. The academies introduce and support teachers in project based learning and cultural competency.