Advanced Technological Education ·

Welcome to the ATE Central Connection! Published the first Monday of each month, the ATE Central Connection is meant to disseminate information to and about ATE centers and projects, providing you with up-to-date ATE news, events, reminders, as well as highlighting new centers, projects, and resources. In addition, we will also highlight an educational topic with complementary resources found within ATE Central to help illustrate how ATE resources can be used in the classroom.

We want the ATE Central Connection to be a valuable tool; please e-mail with any suggestions about how to make the ATE Central Connection more useful for you or to suggest any information you would like to see in an upcoming issue.

The NEW ATE Program Solicitation (NSF 18-571) is now available!

In This Issue

Featured Resources in Engineering

From PathTech LIFE: Constructing a National Survey of Engineering Technology Students through Regional and Statewide Testing:

Successful Academic and Employment Pathways in Advanced Technologies

This resource includes information about PathTech and a research project covering successful academic and employment pathways in advanced technologies. This research project utilizes mixed methods to understand recruitment and pathways into Engineering Technology (ET) programs, and link ET education programs with industry careers.

The following sections are included:

  1. What is PathTech?
  2. Engineering Technology in Florida
  3. Research Agenda and Mixed Methods Design
  4. Findings, Community Impact and Intellectual Merits
  5. Preliminary Policy Suggestions
  6. USF PathTech Team and Contact Information

From Technological Education Pathways Partnership (TEPP):

Thermostat Teaching Element

This lesson, from the Technological Education Pathways Partnership (TEPP), uses two PowerPoint presentations to lead students through the components of a digital non-programmable thermostat and how they work. A lab guide, available via a Word document, presents the needed materials and directions for students to work with thermostat components in class, including building circuits, testing heating control, and testing cooling control.

From Florida Advanced Technology Education Center for Manufacturing (FLATE):

Light Up with Technology: LED Circuit Application: Middle School Lesson Plan

FLATE, the Florida Advanced Technological Education Center for Manufacturing, has developed a series of lesson plans to prepare students for careers in manufacturing. These lesson plans are intended to enrich science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) classes and provide students with real world scenarios relevant to manufacturers throughout Florida.

Each model lesson includes materials needed to "engage students with authentic and sometimes unresolved challenges faced by manufacturing companies today."

To view the lesson description and contents in full, visit the ATE Central resource record.

Community Connection

Help Nurture the Next Generation of ATE Principal Investigators

Mentor-Connect is offering Mentor Fellow internships to individuals involved in the Advanced Technological Education program who want to assist two-year college educators while they write their first ATE grant proposals.

Mentor Fellows must have at least three years of experience working with an ATE center or project. In addition, they must have implemented at least two ATE projects and have experience with the processes involved in designing projects and writing ATE grant proposals so that they have sufficient background to serve as Mentor-Connect mentors after the one-year internship.

The internship is a part-time commitment for which Mentor Fellows receive a stipend and $1,750 in travel support to attend two Mentor-Connect workshops during 2019.

Mentor Fellow applicants must complete the application form, submit their resumes, and have at least two letters of recommendation from ATE principal investigators or co-principal investigators who are familiar with their work.

These materials must be emailed to by 11:59 p.m. EST, September 28, 2018. The Mentor Fellow internship is the recommended route for individuals interested in becoming Mentor-Connect mentors.

Mentor-Connect is a regenerative leadership development initiative, as well as a source of mentoring and technical assistance for two-year colleges that have never had an ATE grant or that have not had an ATE grant in the past seven years. This ATE project is a partnership between the South Carolina Advanced Technological Education Center at Florence-Darlington Technical College in Florence, South Carolina and the American Association of Community Colleges in Washington, D.C.

Nurturing the next generation of ATE principal investigators as a Mentor-Connect mentor is a role that three veteran Mentor-Connect mentors highly recommend. Elaine Johnson, principal investigator of Bio-Link, says mentees are not the only ones who benefit from Mentor-Connect. "For me [it] becomes a very exciting opportunity to work with those people who now themselves are energized because of this opportunity ... it re-energizes me. This is not a one-way thing."

Mel Cossette, principal investigator of the National Resource Center for Materials Technology Education, explains that she serves as a Mentor-Connect mentor "because it's fun—and I enjoy mentoring, cultivating, nurturing, seeing them [mentees] grow, seeing them really get engaged, and getting more people to come to ATE … putting in proposals, increasing our numbers."

Vincent A. DiNoto Jr., principal investigator of GeoTech Center, considers his work as a Mentor-Connect mentor a part of his service to the ATE community. "I think it is an important process, and important to give back to the community. I've been blessed in my career to receive various grants and to do things that few community college [educators] get to do. I think we [ATE principal investigators] need to realize that we are becoming an older population and we need to get new energetic blood in there."

ATE Success Tips: Outreach

Blogging is a very effective tool that can easily be implemented into the outreach efforts of any project or center. If you’ve never blogged before, where do you start and what do you write about?

One effective technique is to write for the audience you’re trying to reach. Understanding your target audience is always a good start to writing a blog post – resonating with their interests will attract more followers to your blog.

The ATE Impacts Blog is a great example others can look to for ideas on how to write about topics that are engaging, interesting, and useful to the ATE community. If you’re considering starting a blog, but you’re not sure of which platform to use, check out the ATE Central Outreach Kit. The outreach kit contains more tips and ideas about how to effectively blog, in addition to many outreach ideas and strategies.

Did You Know?

According to data collected by the Pew Research Center, women represent 75 percent of the nine million healthcare practitioners and technicians. To learn more see the Pew site and view this info-graphic from the American Association of Community Colleges.

Select STEM Education Resources

A few online STEM resources from outside of ATE, that you may find of interest:

STEM to STEAM: Resources Toolkit

For educators looking for ways to introduce interdisciplinary elements into their classrooms, Edutopia's STEM to STEAM: Resources Toolkit may fit the bill. Here, readers will find links to three curated collections of resources aimed towards helping teachers use integrated studies to increase students' engagement. The first collection contains more than thirty resources and focuses on STEM (Science, Technology, Education, Arts, and Mathematics) lessons and activities "to help students practice cross-disciplinary thinking." The second collection offers over fifteen resources geared towards "incorporating aspects of the arts, design, and the humanities into STEM-based school activities," thus turning STEM lessons into STEAM lessons. The third collection focuses on "maker culture" and offers more than thirty resources to help incorporate a hands-on, kinetic approach to STEM (and STEAM) lessons. Each collection is grouped into subtopics and organized such that readers unfamiliar with the topic can orient themselves before diving into the different activities. Edutopia is funded by the George Lucas Educational Foundation, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to improving K-12 education.

Which One Doesn’t Belong?

For mathematics instructors and tutors, math educator Mary Bourassa has created this collection of "thought-provoking puzzles for math teachers and students alike." Each of these puzzles presents learners with four items and asks students to identify and explain which item is the odd one out. However, these puzzles feature one notable twist on the "Which One Doesn't Belong" puzzle: every single item in each grouping could be considered the one that does not belong depending on what criteria learners chose to examine. As a result, these puzzles offer an opportunity for learners to engage in open inquiry and conversation about mathematical concepts. This collection features three kinds of groupings: shapes, numbers, and graphs & equations. As of this write-up, this collection includes over 150 puzzles. Visitors are invited to submit their own puzzles to add to this collection.

Crash Course: History of Science

Those curious about how science and scientific knowledge have developed over time will want to check out Crash Course History of Science. Launched in March 2018, this video series is one of the newest additions to veteran vlogging brothers Hank and John Green's popular Crash Course YouTube channel. With fourteen episodes as of this writing, and new episodes still being added, the video series starts by breaking down the very concept of "science." From there, each approximately 12-minute episode discusses the history and social context of a particular scientific time period, such as engineering in the Roman empire, science in the medieval Islamicate world, and timekeeping in the Americas. History of Science is hosted by Hank Green, who notes in the first episode that one goal of the series is to "highlight how the values [...] and ethics [...] of scientists and engineers shape our world, and how [...] sciences and technologies are shaped by the societies that produce them." This series holds appeal for educators as well as the general public due to its accessible explanations, fast pace, and dynamic presentation style.

Do you have some great STEM resources you'd like to share with ATE Central? Email us with your ideas at

ATE Events

Upcoming Events
Info National Cyber League Fall Season Registration Online
Eng Smart Mobility: Embracing Technological Advances to Propel Future Growth Washington, D.C.
Gen 2018 Orientation To ATE PI Conference For New Grantees Webinar Online
Bio/Chem ComGen's CURE Conference 2018 Bellevue, WA
Ag/Env Webinar: California’s Pioneering Policies for New Homes: Greater Efficiency with Required Solar En Montpelier, VT
Gen Science Diplomacy 2018 SciDipEd Workshop Washington, DC
Gen 2018 NSF ATE Program Funding Opportunities and Mentor-Connect Orientation Webinar Online
Gen Promoting Student Success in Math at FSCJ Jacksonville, FL
Gen Science Diplomacy 2018 Washington, DC
Gen MAE Data Visualization Workshop Ann Arbor, MI
Info Learn How College Students Are Defining Humanitarian Mapping Online
Gen Project Access Workshop at FSCJ Jacksonville, FL
Mfg Technician Workforce Development forum and facility tour Norco, CA
Gen Writing in the Disciplines Jacksonville, FL
Info New Workshops for Fall 2018: Mapping with Drones (two sessions) Blacksburg, VA
Eng 2018 Fall Professional Development Course: Electric-Drive Vehicles Technology Dayton, OH
Nano National Nanotechnology day Lincoln, NE
Gen Career Pathways: Creating Connections, Building Futures Louisville, KY
Eng WoPhyS 2018 Lincoln, NE
Nano Discover Engineering Days Lincoln, NE
Mfg Manufacturing Day Expo Utica, New York
Info New Workshops for Fall 2018: Mapping with Drones (two sessions) Richmond, VA
Gen Washington Science Teachers Association Fall 2018 Annual Conference Bellingham, WA
Info GeoFest 2018 - Celebrating 30 Years of the NYGA! Rochester, NY
Gen STEM Fest 2018 Sandy, UT
Gen ATE PI 2018 Conference Washington, DC
Mfg Materials in STEM 2018 Birmingham, AL
Eng ESC Region 2 Technology Conference 2018 Corpus Christi, Texas
Mfg FABTECH 2018 Atlanta, GA
Bio/Chem National Association of Biology Teachers 2018 Conference San Diego, CA
Gen Project Access Workshop at FSCJ Jacksonville, FL

For more events, please visit the ATE Central Events page or, if you have any upcoming events that you would like posted on ATE Central or in the ATE Central Connection, please submit them online.

To add a continuously-updated list of ATE and STEM education events to your website, use the ATE Event Widget.

News & Reminders

NEW ATE Program Solicitation
NSF 18-571 (Replaces NSF 17-568)

Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):
    October 15, 2018
    October 03, 2019
    October 01, 2020

Some key revisions to take note of as you read this new solicitation include a later submission date this year - giving applicants a bit of extra time to craft their proposal. Changes have been made to the ATE Centers track, including an increase in the maximum budget for a center proposal which has been raised to $7.5 million over five years, with the possibility of one renewal. Centers may then choose to transition to a resource center. Budget numbers for resource centers have also been raised - with the maximum being $1.65 million over three years, also with the possibility of one renewal.

Another shift is a change to the Small Projects New to ATE track – this is now a fourth track within the ATE program with a maximum budget of $300,000 over three years.

Visit NSF's ATE page for an overview of the program, links to recent awards, and access to the solicitation, or to go straight to the solicitation on NSF's site.

Lasers Optics & Photonics Online Self-Paced Faculty Development

Self-paced online course 9/1/2018 - 5/31/2019
(with optional hands-on laboratory capstone experience in June 2019)

The National Center for Optics and Photonic Education (OP-TEC) is offering a hybrid, online faculty development course in optics and photonics with registration beginning September 1, 2018. This open entry/open exit course has been developed for faculty whose schedules demand a flexible course timeline.

OP-TEC is a National Science Foundation (NSF) ATE National Center of Excellence with the mission of promoting photonics education and assisting colleges around the United States in developing and implementing educational programs that support expansion of this critical technology. This online course is being offered at no charge to U.S. high school, community college and technical college faculty interested in teaching a basic photonics course. The course will cover OP-TEC's Fundamentals of Light and Lasers textbook and is facilitated by an instructor experienced in teaching photonics concepts at the college level and will require a high level of independent self-paced instruction.

For more information and registration, please visit, call 254-751-9000, or email

5th Life Discovery – Doing Science Biology Education Conference (LDC)

March 21-23, 2019 
Hilton University of Florida Conference Center, Gainesville, Florida

Conference Theme -- Microbiomes to Ecosystems: Evolution and Biodiversity across Scale, Space, and Time

Our knowledge about the Earth’s biodiversity across space, time, and scale is expanding rapidly. New tools, like remote sensing, are creating new data sources, while other tools, like digitization, are freeing traditional datasets from the cabinets and drawers of labs and collections and making them accessible online. How do we teach students about biodiversity at different scales and contexts with these new data, tools, and resources? How do we best enable and develop the next generation of 21st century scientists and create data-driven educational programs aligned to national initiatives such as Next Generations Science Standards and Vision and Change for Undergraduate Biology Education? The Life Discovery – Doing Science Biology Education Conference will build on the 2017 data theme and challenge educators to create opportunities for their learners to explore our theme across: Scale, Space and Time.

Call for Proposals at
Deadline for Proposals: September 30, 2018

Professional Development Workshops hosted by the Regional Center for Nuclear Education & Training (RCNET)

Eliminating Math as a Barrier to Entry and Success

Description: Math is not only a barrier to completion in community colleges; it is also a barrier to entry for selective enrollment programs across the nation specifically for minority and low socio-economic groups. This workshop describes a successful novel approach to overcome the math barrier for a cohort of underserved student and how that pilot led to a complete redesign of math across an entire department and can be replicated at your school.

This workshop has two dates and two different locations – please contact RCNET PI Kevin Cooper at the below contact information with questions and to register.

Date: September 13-15, 2018
Location: Orlando, FL

Date: October 11-12, 2018
Location: Fort Pierce, FL

Contact Information: Kevin Cooper, PI RCNET;; 772-462-7546

Would you like copies of the ATE Impacts book?

Book orders and general inquiries about ATE Impacts 2018-2019: Twenty-Five Years of Advancing Technician Education can be emailed to

Archiving your deliverables with ATE Central is now easier than ever!

Upload your curriculum, professional development materials, or other deliverables created with ATE funding directly to the ATE Central resource portal via the new archive submission form.

Can CWIS software help support your project goals?

CWIS is open source software, created with NSF funding, that can help your project or center showcase resources online. It's free and very easy to use. The latest version (CWIS 4.1.1) was released on and is available for download on the Scout site. Please email if you have any questions or would like a quick tour of its features!

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