Alabama School of Mathematics and Science
|Alabama School of Mathematics and Science|
Seal of The Alabama School of Mathematics and Science
|1255 Dauphin Street
Mobile, Alabama, 36604
|School type||Public, Residential Secondary|
|President||Dr. Monica Motley|
|Color(s)||Blue and Green
The Alabama School of Mathematics and Science (ASMS) is a public residential high school in the Midtown neighborhood of Mobile, Alabama. ASMS is a member of the National Consortium for Specialized Secondary Schools of Mathematics, Science and Technology. It graduated its first class in 1993.
The school was founded in 1989 as a unique public-private partnership. The Alabama School of Mathematics and Science is part of the state government, while the Alabama School of Mathematics and Science Foundation coordinates private support. It was modeled after the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics and the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts where students complete their final two or three years of high school focusing on advanced studies in mathematics and the sciences. It does not charge for tuition, books, room, or board. The only fee is an annual "activities fee" which covers class trips and other day-to-day activities. Although its name suggests focus on Mathematics and Science, ASMS also has a History Department and an English Department that offer college-level courses that prepare students for collegiate studies in those areas.
All courses are taught at the Advanced Placement or Honors level. Most teachers at the school have a doctorate, and all have at least a master's degree. The school has placed in Newsweek's top ten schools in the State of Alabama in 2008 and 2009. The strong academic program, which is comprehensive in the sciences as well as the humanities, is complemented by varsity and intramural sports, residential life activities, and college counseling.
Admission is open to all Alabama high school students via a process akin to college admissions. Initially, students could enter only as high school juniors, but in September 1998 the school also allowed sophomores to apply for entry. Students have been admitted as seniors, but this is extremely rare.
ASMS also offers an academic summer camp for students entering the 7th through 10th grades. The Adventures In Math and Science summer program is typically held in June and enrolls roughly 250 students over the course of three weeks. Students from across Alabama can enroll in classes that are taught by ASMS instructors. Courses include: Marine Biology, Geometry with Computers, Painting, Spanish, ACT Verbal and Math Prep, Football in Alabama: a History, Exploring Vampires in Literature and Pop Culture, Photoshop, Rocketry, Engineering the Future, Weird Food Science, among others. The camp offers a residential program as well as a day-school program. AIMS runs for three week-long sessions. Each AIMS student takes three courses of their choice per week. Admissions to AIMS is highly competitive. Nearly 36 percent of students who attend the AIMS summer program enroll as full-time ASMS students.
The school was formerly the site of Dauphin Way Baptist Church and underwent extensive alterations to create classrooms, laboratories, and dormitories. In May 2006, the school commenced groundbreaking on the first new building since the building of the Boy's Dorm. This construction demolished the old Student Activities Center (SAC), and was completed for the start of the 2007-08 academic year. The new building, called the Ann Smith Bedsole Building, as named after one of the main founders of the school, former State Senator Ann Bedsole. The Bedsole Building includes a new library, reception area, several classrooms and offices, a coffee room, TV/lounge room, and games room.
In past years, the girls' dormitory was spread out over two buildings, floors one through four being in the girls' dorm building, while the "fifth floor" was actually on the fourth floor of the humanities building. At the end of the 2009-10 school year, faculty decided to close "fifth floor," and it is now being used as storage for extra furniture. The boys' dormitory is contained in one two-story building. Both the boys' and girls' dorms are divided into four halls- Einstein, Curie, Newton, and Da Vinci- which compete in several contests, such as a talent show and goofy olympics, throughout the school year to determine the year's winning hall.
In the fall of 2004, Mike Zambrano '05, president of High Fantasy a role playing and card game club, in a collaborative effort with the Presidents of: the DDR club, Matt McCawley '05; the Anime club, Licki Kallenberg '05; and Anindo Sarker '05 organized a large, entertainment oriented event that involved the whole student body. Due to its popularity, the event became a school tradition, generally held once each trimester. The principal organizers for the 05-06 year were Jonathan Kush '06 and Jean-Jacques DeLisle '06, presidents of the anime and RPG clubs respectively. The current organization of geekfest is no longer handled by the former three clubs, but operates as an independent organization.
This event operates similar to a small fan convention, and includes activities that are predominantly associated with "Geek" culture. Such activities include anime and/or film showings, a LAN party for PCs, independent console games, board games, card games, DDR, Guitar Hero, as well as other events. The event is traditionally held in the SAC, but renovations have caused the event to be moved to several different locations. During the 2006-07 year Geekfest was held in multiple areas inside the Administration building. Upon the completion of the Bedsole Building, geekfest was held in areas around the first floor.
On the last weekend before finals of the Spring term, the school hosts Stress Fest, designed to alleviate students' stress and give them time to enjoy themselves before tests. The event mainly consists of: field games, tournaments, a rock wall, ice cream truck, tie-dye T-shirts, barbecue, and live bands.
- Oculus: features poetry, short stories, and works of art created by the students
- Firewire: the school newspaper
- Azimuth: the school yearbook
- Virgil Griffith (Class of 2002) - Creator of WikiScanner
- Ryan Williams - Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University