Oxbow Meadows Recognized Statewide for STEM Education

COLUMBUS, Ga. — Columbus State University’s Oxbow Meadows Environmental Learning Center was recently named a finalist for the 2015 Georgia STEM Education Award in Post Secondary Outreach, a statewide honor presented by the Technology Association of Georgia (TAG) and the TAG Education Collaborative.

Oxbow Meadows and five other organizations from Columbus, Augusta and Atlanta competing in the Post Secondary Outreach category will hear the winner announced Friday, August 28 at the Carlos Community Center in Atlanta during a special awards gala featuring keynote speaker Governor Nathan Deal.

The Georgia STEM Education Awards recognize schools, programs and companies for outstanding efforts and achievements in supporting and promoting STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education in Georgia.

“Georgia will need to fill some 211,000 STEM-related jobs by 2018, so we are pleased to showcase so many great schools, programs and organizations that are helping to develop a strong future workforce for our state,” said Michael Robertson, director of TAG Education Collaborative, in a press release announcing the award finalists.

“The education programs at Oxbow Meadows are designed to provide students with experiential learning opportunities while engaging in ecosystem-based activities,” said Jan Kent, assistant director of Oxbow Meadows. “Using the local environment as a framework for learning, students use cross-cutting concepts in forestry management, wildlife tracking and marine ecology to understand how our environment changes over time.”

This is Oxbow’s first attempt at securing the four-year-old award, but educators have been developing the center’s STEM offerings since its expansion in 2011.

“We applaud each of this year’s finalists for their extraordinary efforts to bolster awareness about the importance of STEM and for their hard work to increase student participation in science, technology, engineering and math programs,” Robertson said.

Oxbow Meadows is an outreach program of Columbus State University, operated in collaboration with Columbus Water Works and the City of Columbus since 1995 at 3535 S. Lumpkin Road. It features indoor and outdoor exhibits of living reptiles and fish, nature trails, a stream habitat and more. For more information about Oxbow Meadows, visit https://oxbow.columbusstate.edu/.

For more information about TAG and the Georgia STEM Education Awards, visit http://www.tagonline.org/events/stem-education-awards/.