2017 Student Breakout Sessions


Genes, Bugs & Soil
Presented by: Yarrow Flower, Sarah Sterling & Krishna Bayyareddy, Monsanto

Technology has played big roles in developing the agriculture industry. Come learn and experience a few of the technologies that Monsanto uses including biotechnology, soil conservation practices and integrated pest management programs.



Maunakea Scholars: Cultivating Student Scientists
Presented by: Mary Beth Laychak & Karen Umeda, Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope

The Maunakea Scholats Program enables high school juniors and seniors to conduct research and submit proposals to compete for telescope observing time just like actual astronomers. It provides phenomena-driven STEM education opportunities to students that aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards. The first program of its kind internationally, MKS leverages the most powerful telescopes in the world for the educational advancement of Hawaii high school students.

AFRL Planetarium
Presented by: Ryan Swindle & Kim Luu, Air Force Research Laboratory

Explore the heavens from the Air Force Research Laboratory’s portable planetrium! Learn about the popular night-sky objects that you can see from your backyard, either with the naked eye or the aid of a small telescope or binoculars. This digital planetarium show will teach you how to understand astronomical coordinate systems, use important points to find stars, planets, constellations, and even satellites!



How to be a Clean Energy Champion
Presented by: John Cheever, Blue Planet Foundation

Students will learn about the state’s clean energy goals and the need to reduce our individual and collective energy consumption. We are about one-quarter of the way to our goal of 100% clean energy by 2045. The technologies and processes to get there have not been invented yet and therefore represent an enormous opportunity for innovation. This workshop will apply Design-Thinking principles to find the solutions that will address the challenges we face.



Anyone Can Code
Presented by: Natalie Ramirez & Christie Reindle, DevLeague LLC

We know how intimidating coding sounds to some people and we want to show students that anyone can code. This session is a perfect place to start for beginners who have no coding or design experience. We will give students an introduction to HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Students will learn how build a simple eye-catching web application. Furthermore, students will learn about resources online to take their skills to the next level.

Bloxels: Game Design
Presented by: Shane Asselstine, Momilani Elementary School

Game designing offers students an engaging opportunity to be creative, think critically, and problem solve. In this session, participants will be given an opportunity to plan and design a game of their very own! Create amazing levels, your own characters, and even the villain of your dreams. Tell a story or learn something new!

Code Challenge: Dash & Dot
Presented by: Shane Asselstine, Momilani Elementary School

In a world where computer science and computational thinking are fundamental to all students, the tools we use are evolving. Programmable robots come in a variety of forms and they allow students to interact with the technology to produce real life results. In this session, participants will work collaboratively to solve challenges utilizing the Dash & Dot to bring coding to life! Step up to the challenge and see if you can complete them!

Coding and Making with the micro:bit
Presented by: Microsoft Team

The micro:bit is a pocket-sized computer that you can code, customize, and control to bring your digital ideas, games and apps to life. In this session, you will flex your coding, hacking, and

making muscles and express your digital creativity to create to a virtual pet, an electron football

game, a step counter and more!

Step Up Your Game
Presented by: Natalie Ramirez & Raymond Luong, DevLeague LLC

This session will be an introduction to Unity 3D game development. The Unity game engine is by far the most dominating game development software in the industry. More games are made with Unity than any other game technology. We will start by exploring the Unity interface and learning how to create and manipulate objects in the editor. We will also be covering the basics of C# programming for game design and development. The lesson focuses on the most important concepts for beginners. At the end of this workshop, students will have built a simple 3D game.



Making a Career Out of Computer Hacking!
Presented by: Debasis Bhattacharya, University of Hawaii Maui College

This workshop will explore hands-on activities in computer hacking that could lead to satisfying careers in the future! Defensive hacking techniques can be used to test and strengthen defenses. Honeypots can be created to lure attackers into traps. This workshop will discuss how hackers can be employed by major organizations such as banks, utilities, hospitals, government and transportation agencies. Students will learn hacking skills and how they can transform their passion into a career!

The Buzz on Cyber Security
Presented by: Presented by Jodi Ito, UH Cybersecurity & Steven Auerbach, PCATT

Participants will join a mock security company with a team of supporting characters in order to analyze and learn about the methods and tactics used in a ransomware attack. No computer or security knowledge is required as you will learn how to use the security tools and techniques to save the day. In the second half of the session, you will use your new skills in a non-competitive, Capture-the-Flag (CTF) event that’s been customized to maximize your training. Participants will be paired together to promote collaboration and information sharing in a relaxed and safe environment.

How STEM Skills Impact Our National Security
Presented by: Karen Cheek, NSA Hawaii & Tuan Nguyen, FBI Honolulu

Mathematicians, engineers, and computer scientists are vital to protecting our nation’s citizens and networks. The National Security Agency (NSA) is the U.S. government’s principal cryptologic agency where STEM skills are critical to gain a decision advantage for the Nation and our allies. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) also relies heavily on STEM skills as the nation’s chief law enforcement agency. Come and hear about how STEM skills can impact national security in an ever challenging technical environment. Karen and Tuan will help you explore STEM application in a federal government career.



STEM in Action: Bottle Cap Projectile Launcher
Presented by: Charles Souza & Ryan Saito, Elemental Minds

Get introduced to math and science concepts associated with the Engineering Design Process as you design, create, and test objects in real world situations. The challenge will be to defend yourself against the Zombie Apocalypse by designing a hand-held launcher with everyday materials to make it out of town safely.

Sphero STEM Challenge
Presented by: Terry Holck, Nānākuli – Wai`anae Complex

The two-wheeled horse-drawn chariot was one of the most important inventions in history. It gave humanity its first concept of personal transport, and for 2,000 years it was the key technology of war. For most of humanity’s recorded history, the number of chariots signified the strength of an army. It also became the world’s first mass spectator sport phenomenon.

Teams will use the Engineering Design Process to design and create a chariot that will be propelled by a Sphero. They will then use their programming skills to navigate their chariot through the race course.

UH College of Engineering Programs
Presented by: College of Engineering Ambassadors

What is engineering, you ask? At this session, University of Hawaii at Mānoa College of Engineering students will engage participants in a hands-on engineering experience and relay how the activity applies to their engineering studies and career pathways.  They will also share their personal experience in undergraduate research opportunities, leadership and student development opportunities, as well as their reasons for making UH Mānoa College of Engineering their school of choice.



After Effects – Basics
Presented by: Maui High School ACOM

This session will provide a detailed introduction to the industry standard for motion graphics – Adobe After Effects. In this workshop, we will be focusing on motion graphics and creating animations within After Effects. No footage will be required as we are diving into the visual effects aspect of After Effects and basics of VFX.

InDesign – Basics
Presented by: Maui High School ACOM

Adobe InDesign is the industry standard desktop publishing software for print publications, digital magazines, ebooks, and interactive PDF documents. Through hands-on activities, students will learn the basic tools, the workspace, and workflow to create a basic two page spread for print.

Photoshop – Beginners
Presented by: Maui High School ACOM

This session will cover basic foundation in using Adobe Photoshop. Learn about special effects, image and photo manipulation.

Story > Shot
Presented by: Miki Kamimura, Luane Higuchi, Donn Yamamoto, Austin Zavala, STEM Pre-Academy & John Allen, WCRC

Want to create an unforgettable story that captures the mood and essence of the Hawaii STEM Conference? If so, come and learn how to take your project from “good to great.” You will learn a few techniques that will help change your mindset so that you embrace the process of learning and discovery to solve real-world problems. We will take project-based learning and the idea of “good to great” to a whole new level.



Art of Networking
Presented by: Myhraliza Aala, UH College of Engineering

Whether you’re wanting to make new friends, create study groups or make a career connection, networking can help facilitate those needs. In this session, you learn strategies for effective networking and have fun “role playing” those strategies from sample scenarios provided. The session also touches on professional communication styles in this ever-growing world of social media.

Ask & Receive: Learning How to Negotiate
Presented by: Patsy T. Mink Leadership Alliance

How would you ask your teacher for extra time to complete a school assignment? When you and a friend want to watch a movie, who gets to choose the movie? How would you convince your parents to let you go on a trip that will cost them money? Having solid negotiation skills is the first step to answering these questions and coming to an agreement that suits you and teacher, friends, or parents. This session will teach you the basics of negotiating for what you want and give you a chance to try out those skills in mock negotiation.

Body Lingo Bingo: What Your Body Language is Telling Others
Presented by: Alexis Dascoulias, Camp CenterStage/Maui OnStage

One of the most pervasive forms of communication is not the spoken word, but our body language. Body Lingo Bingo will explore non-verbal communication including body posture, gestures, eye contact and facial expressions. Learn how to walk into a room with confidence and read other people’s body language. This extremely interactive workshop will give you more confidence and teacher you how to read other people’s body language. Ever wonder what it means when someone scratches their nose?

Change the Way You See Everything: Asset Based Thinking
Presented by: Alexis Dascoulias, Camp CenterStage/Maui OnStage

This refreshing new way to shift your mindset creates monumental results. Making small shifts in your day to day thinking is proven to promote greater resilience, optimism and confidence. Many outcomes in our lives are the result of our perception and thinking – so keep them positive and powerful!

Communication Can Get You Everywhere
Presented by: Patsy T. Mink Leadership Alliance

Will Smith said it best in his 2005 movie Hitch: “60% of all human communication is nonverbal body language. 30% is your tone. So that means 90% of what you’re saying ain’t coming out of your mouth.” So, do you want better grades, stronger relationships, and leverage over the competition? Learn how to maximize your verbal and non-verbal communication skills and the world could be yours! In this session, you’ll discover your unique communication style, how to apply specific tools and tactics to your advantage, and how to rock it in presentations, interviews, and relationships.

Is That Really What You Said?
Presented by: Alexis Dascoulias, Camp Centerstage/Maui OnStage

Have you ever arrived at the end of your day to discover that something you said before your first class has been completely turned around? This workshop will guide you through steps to help you become a more effective communicator by developing your speaking and listening skills. Practice the important act of mirroring and reflecting when listening and how to check in with someone if you are doing all the talking.

Speed Mentoring: A Networking Game for Curious and Driven Students
Presented by: Patsy T Mink Leadership Alliance

Fast, fun and focused- partake in a series of 10-15 minute quick-fire mentoring sessions with young charismatic female leaders that share your interest in education, career and leadership development. Our two-way mentoring game is based on equality and the belief that we all have something unique to give and receive. You will have the opportunity to meet female leaders in various fields as you take turns discussing with a mentor, sharing wisdom, gaining diverse input on your current challenges while making new business relationships. Intentionally intimate—each group is limited to 12 to 20 individuals.

Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones – But My Words Have SUPER POWERS!
Presented by: Alexis Dascoulias, Camp CenterStage/Maui OnStage

The words we use say a lot! That may seem obvious, but still there’s a lot of truth in that statement. And it’s not just the words we use, but also the context and feelings behind them. Choosing our words wisely helps us build the kind of relationships we need with peers – whether they are fellow students, business partners or your employer. Carry these observations and interactive conversation back to the “real world” and know that your words are powerful!

Story Boarding Your Life: Setting Realistic Goals and Achieving Them!
Presented by: Alexis Dascoulias, Camp CenterStage/Maui OnStage

Take a goal, any goal (getting into your top choice college, landing that great summer internship) and work as a film director to create a story board for accomplishing that goal. Pre-visualize your life and goals with images, words, illustrations and even interactive media. Leave this session with a story board and fantastic tools!


Digital Storytelling with Sway
Presented by: Microsoft Team

Sway is a free, web-based program that makes it quick and easy to create and share polished, interactive reports, presentations, personal stories, and more. In this session, you will learn how to bring your digital stories to life with interactive content, including videos, charts, tweets, and other media. Family, friends, classmates, and teachers can see your creation on the web without signing up or downloading additional software. You will leave this session with an interactive Sway capturing your experience at the Conference – and even a prize!

Creating Forms & Applications in ArcGIS & ArcGIS Online
Presented by: Craig Clouet, Esri

Hands-on workshop where you will learn how to create simple web based and mobile survey applications. Using Survey123, participants will learn the basics and deploy a simple application. Examples of more advanced mobile applications will be discussed and presented. The second half of the workshop will explore the Web App Builder, and show participants how to go beyond the Esri templates to create Mapping and GIS applications, yet still not having to write lines of code.

Creating Functional Art Using Fusion 360
Presented by: Nick Fournier, Fournier Designs LLC

Computer Aided Design (CAD) helps artists and engineers design and create products that solve everyday problems. This class will focus on creating engineered art using Fusion 360. We will demonstrate how to use the program to engineer a device, sculpt the geometry using organic modeling techniques, and then use the program to determine and simulate the manufacturing process.

Introduction to Machine Learning
Presented by: Nicolas Turner & Sylvana Cares, University of Hawaii

Learn about the technology behind self-driving cars, autonomous robots, search engines, and intelligent gadgets like Amazon Alexa. Machine learning gives computers the ability to learn without being explicitly programmed and is one of the most sought after skills in the tech industry. In this hands-on session, we will explore machine learning with Python using TensorFlow and scikit-learn open source libraries to build an image classifier.

What’s your STEM Career?
Presented by: Ellen Pomerantz, STEM Jobs

STEM Jobs will guide you through the STEM Type Quiz and connect your interests to skills required in high-demand, high-paying STEM careers in the real world. Once you receive your STEM Type, STEM Jobs will guide you through career exploration activities and outline the different training and education paths available to students interested in STEM careers. STEM Jobs will bust some common myths and stereotypes about STEM careers and show you that there really is a place for you in a challenging and rewarding STEM career.

Satellite Communications – The Billion Dollar Technology
Presented by: Iwalani Gutierrez, Jeffrey Barlett & Isaac Costa, Regional Satellite Communications Support Center Pacific

Satellite communication is a multi-billion dollar space-based industry and is widely reliant on by the military today. The race to space brought us loads of technology we use today; a call home while on a cruise ship, traffic updates in our cars. How does a message get from a soldier in Afghanistan to his commander in Hawaii using a satellite that is 22,300 miles up in space? Let’s examine the radio frequencies, modulations and 1’s and 0’s that are part of the mix. Let’s talk space.

STEM Playground
Presented by: Chris Coffelt, Nani Daniels & Jennifer Kirsch, Apple Inc.

Experience the excitement of the Apple STEM playground for yourself. Participants will have the opportunity to experience chemistry through augmented reality and utilize coding to direct a robot through a course! Come experience contemporary STEM applications that are sure to provide engaging, collaborative and memorable learning for students of all ages.

STEMworks College Toolkit
Presented by: Isla Young, MEDB, Women in Technology Project, STEMworks

It is never to early to start planning! This session will provide you with a booklet outlining the steps you need to take to jump start your college planning. We will also cover resources for scholarships, mentorship programs and important deadlines.

UAS in Hawaii’s Future
Presented by: George Purdy IV & Mike Elliot, Drone Service Hawaii LLC

UAS Hawaii’s roll in development of this industry in 2017 and beyond.

Pathways in development.

Business in operations.

Building your business.

Education in your schools.

UH STEMFest: STEM in Action!
Presented by: UH Faculty

The University of Hawaii offers over 250 majors in STEM! Feeling overwhelmed by the choices? Attend this interactive and hands-on session with students and representatives from UH to learn about your options within STEM. Explore and move freely between different booths in this open exhibition. After attending this session, you’ll be excited about the STEM fields at UH and understand how to best prepare for STEM degrees at UH. Get your UH passport stamped and play a trivia game for free stuff!