Thu09182014

Schools

Los Altos High emphasizes value of math and science


Photo By: Charles So/Special to the Town Crier
Photo Charles So/Special To The Town Crier

Clifford Nass, professor of communications at Stanford University, addresses Los Altos High students on “Multitasking How Does It Change the Way You Think?” during Science & Tech Week.

Los Altos High School hosted its seventh annual Science & Tech Week on campus last week, exposing students to leading scientists and high-tech executives from all reaches of Silicon Valley.

A series of diverse guest speakers discussed the value of science and math education during the week, including Odette Harris, M.D., associate professor and director of brain injury in the neurosurgery department at Stanford Hospital and Clinics; Konstantin Guericke, co-founder of LinkedIn; Charles Huang, co-creator of Guitar Hero; Seth Shostak, astronomer at the SETI Institute; Clifford Nass, professor of communications at Stanford University; and Anne Toth, head of privacy at Google.

Students learned about a broad range of topics, from how doctors treat head injuries to the behind-the-scene efforts devoted to making popular video games.

“Science & Tech Week always has a good selection of presenters,” said Adam Evard, a senior at Los Altos High.

Evard said his favorite presentation at Science & Tech Week over the years involved electric vehicles, because he is interested in innovative technology.

Los Altos High has sponsored Science & Tech Week for the past for six years. Local community members founded the venture to highlight the value of science and math.

According to organizers, Science & Tech Week aims to:

• Demonstrate the value of a science and math education, thereby encouraging more Los Altos High students to take science and math classes during their high school years.

• Raise student awareness of the variety of science- and math-related educational and career opportunities in the Bay Area, including those involving other academic disciplines such as music, economics, law and the arts.

• Showcase the diverse backgrounds (and obstacles many have overcome) of today’s successful scientists, mathematicians, engineers and technologists.

• Inspire the next generation of innovative thinkers and show that thinking creatively can be achieved by anyone.

Students, staff and speakers participate in the event in an effort to curb the decline of science and math in U.S. curricula.

“The event has tremendous value to the community,” said Adam Randall, physics teacher at Los Altos High.

Randall, who has taught at the school for 15 years, said he believes that Los Altos High is one of the best high schools in the state, and that such community involvement is among the reasons.

For more information, visit www.mvla.net/lahs.

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