Conroe ISD Academy of Science and Technology

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The Conroe Independent School District Academy of Science and Technology, in Conroe, Texas is a specialized magnet school in science and technology; also a member of NCSSSMST. It was founded at Oak Ridge High School with the first graduates in 1991. The AST relocated to The Woodlands College Park High School in stages from 2005 to 2007. The first headmaster was Dr. David Archer, who held the position until 1991, and was later led by Dr. Ron Laugen who held the position until 2007. The current Academy headmistress is Dr. Susan Caffery.

Math, science, and electives in these areas are taught by the AST faculty, with most of these classes including students only from the Academy. All other courses are taken with the high school along with students who are not in the magnet program.

In order to obtain membership to the Academy of Science and Technology, one must go through a process of applying, testing, and essay reviewing. A selected portion of the students are invited to an interview with two members of the Academy of Science and Technology faculty before being accepted. For each class, 65 students are initially accepted, and ten are wait listed. The size of each class at a given time is between 65 and 77 students. There are approximately 270 students in the Academy. The students are selected from College Park, the Woodlands High and Oak Ridge High- you do not have to be in the College Park zoning.

Academy Mission[edit]

Additional AST Requirements[edit]

Research and Problems[edit]

Each AST student is required to complete a Research and Problems project for local credit each year. In the first year, all are required to do science fair. Many students proceed to the Science and Engineering Fair of Houston after district competition at the Sci:// Tech Exposition. The Academy of Science and Technology has a strong record of having students in all grades proceed to the ExxonMobil Texas State Science and Engineering Fair and the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. Other options upperclassmen have for fulfilling their Research And Problems requirement include BEST Robotics, FIRST Robotics, Destination Imagination, Engineering Design Competition, Biotechnology Competition, and Envirothon Competition.

Explorations[edit]

14 "Exploration credits" must be earned by each student for local credit to graduate from the AST. These credits are earned through several means: Job shadowing in a technical, scientific, or medical field; documented and researched exploration trips to places such as Alaska, the Galapagos Islands, The Grand Canyon, Colorado, Peru, and Belize; scientific lectures; short day trips to scientific laboratories or companies; college visits; attending approved lectures on scientific topics; and approved student-proposed explorations that are relevant to scientific fields.

Internship[edit]

All students are also required to complete an internship in the technical, medical, or scientific community of at least 80 hours. It is usually done in the area of interest of the student. Students have completed internships at NASA, Memorial Hermann and St. Luke's hospitals, the National Zoo, and many local businesses. The internship is normally done during the summer between the junior and senior years. In order to fulfill the requirement, students must keep a detailed journal of their daily experiences.

Fish Camp[edit]

As a means of being "inducted" into the Academy, all incoming students are expected to attend a three day camp. It is held about three weeks prior to the start of each school year and campers consist mainly of incoming freshmen, as well as newly accepted upperclassmen. AST upperclassmen volunteer to serve as counselors to the new students. Various outdoor activities take place in the three days, including a ropes course (high and low elements) and other team building exercises. The purpose of this two and a half day camp is for new students to meet upperclassmen, to interact with each other, and to promote the four virtues that are pivotal to AST: Teamwork, Responsibility, Integrity, and Perseverance (TRIP). Through writing a report on the experience, incoming freshmen may earn their first 2 "Exploration credits" towards graduation from AST.

Other activities[edit]

AST students are active in such clubs as Mu Alpha Theta, Interact, Leo Club as well as Literary Club and many other clubs the host school has to offer. In addition, they participate in the host school's activities, including band, choir, drama, chess club, and athletics.

External links[edit]