On Monday, March 12th 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, DC hosted its annual STEM Day At The Labs.  Held in partnership with the Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP) the event took place at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Silver Spring, MD, home to the world’s foremost researchers and investigators of emerging infectious diseases.


This year 50 freshmen and sophomores from National Collegiate Preparatory High School in Washington, DC’s Ward 8 were able to participate in a wide range of STEM education programs and hands-on activities.


The full day of programming included:


  • Introduction to Infectious Diseases
  • Infectious Disease Activities
  • Introduction to Vector-Borne Diseases
  • Vector-Borne Disease Activities
  • Introduction to Multidrug-Resistant Organisms
  • Multidrug-Resistant Organisms Activities


We spoke with two of the National Collegiate Prep. students to learn more about them, and how STEM education has changed their lives.  Here is what they had to say:


Elena Ramirez is a 14 yr. old 9th grader at National Collegiate Prep.  She heard about the STEM Day At The Labs through her STEM teacher, and 100 member, Mr. Melvin Stallings.  During the Day At The Labs Elena learned about genetics and animals that spread diseases.  She liked working with the microscopes and getting to hold a tarantula, snake and scorpion.  Elena wants to go to LSU or the University of Madrid and study medicine, specifically blood diseases.  Elana said it was really fun doing all of the activities and that it showed her another side of science.


Virgil Flack is a 14 yr. old 9th grader at National Collegiate Prep., and he heard about the STEM Day At The Labs through his Computer Literacy teacher, and 100 member, Mr. Melvin Stallings.  Virgil learned about the importance of thoroughly washing your hands, that scorpion’s exoskeleton glows in the dark, and that you have to find patient “0” to definitively learn how a disease spreads.  STEM education is important to him because math is one of his favorite subjects.  Math allows you to build buildings and science helps you cure diseases.  Virgil wants to go to Yale or the University of Seattle and major in nanobiology.  He’d like to pursue a career in nanobiology.


We’d like to recognize the exceptional work of the STEM Education Committee Chairman, Kevin  Walter Smith, and committee members Melvin Stallings and W.J. Williams, for providing this and other great educational opportunities to our students.  We’d also like to thank Dr. Debra Yourick, Dr. Emily McDermott, Major Anthony Jones, and everyone else from Walter Reed Army Institute of Research for providing an incredibly educational and fun day for all involved.



To learn more about our programs, membership and partnership opportunities, please visit www.100blackmendc.org or email VPOperations@100BlackMenDC.org.


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