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Bohatch’s STEDTRAIN grant to further cryogenics study

Carol Bohatch will set up the ‘big chill’ at James Clemens High School with a grant from Huntsville Association of Technical Societies (HATS).

Dr. Mike Baran presents the STEDTRAIN grant to Carol Bohatch.

HATS has a committee, Science and Technology Education and Training (STEDTRAIN), that administers a seed grant program with $1,000 grants to educators who develop hands-on projects in science and technology.

Bohatch and other area recipients received their grants at the 2012-2013 Seed Grant Awards Ceremony at the Samples Auditorium in Huntsville on Aug. 25. Dr. Mike Baran, HATS STEDTRAIN committee chairman, was a keynote speaker.

Bohatch, a chemistry teacher, will use her “Cry-O-Chemistry” grant to pay for materials for experiments with liquid nitrogen. She can transport liquid nitrogen from the retailer to school with a “dewar,” a container providing excellent insulation.

In addition, Bohatch plans to purchase “a Nalgene bucket, which will allow the students to place objects into the liquid nitrogen and study the gas laws and science of very cold temperatures called cryogenics.”

To succeed in submitting a grant, “the key is providing equipment and opportunities that create opportunities for students to actively engage in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) activities,” she said.

“As everyone knows, the education budget is very tight. In fact, the science budgets at many schools are near zero. It is very difficult to conduct lab activities that require equipment and consumables on zero to very little monies,” Bohatch said.

Madison City Schools has produced students with STEM experiences far beyond their peers when they enter college. “We have been able to do this with supporters, such as HATS-STEDTRAIN and local donors,” Bohatch said. “For all the outside support, I am very thankful to have the materials I need to serve the students.”

This year, Bohatch transferred from Bob Jones High School to teach at James Clemens. “Every day, the stress level of being in a new atmosphere is lessening. I’m beginning to get excited about spending time creating new and innovative ways to serve our science students.”

For more information, visit stedtrain.org.

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