Young people from East Tennessee communities are using data science and data visualization to tell stories that are personally meaningful to them and their communities. An event at UT’s John C. Hodges Library on March 30 will offer an opportunity for participating students to share progress to-date on their data art projects.
That event — styled “Dear Data: MVP Style” — is part of a three-year project funded by the National Science Foundation. Mathematizing, Visualizing, and Power (MVP): Appalachian Youth Becoming Data Artists for Community Learning* extends STEM education into underrepresented Appalachian communities. It also positions the participating 6th- to 12th-grade students as producers of knowledge and owners of data.
Partners on the MVP project include the University of Tennessee, Pellissippi State Community College, Drexel University, and the Boys and Girls Club of the Tennessee Valley. Thanks to those partners, students are receiving instruction in both statistics and the data visualizations involved in presenting their findings.
Students will have several opportunities to share their statistical prowess and data artistry. At the March 30 tabling event, from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on the first floor of Hodges Library, students will present their interactive exhibits and converse with visitors. (The next public event will be an art gallery hosted by Pellissippi State Community College.) Parents and the general public are invited to drop by the March 30 event. This will be a fun opportunity to speak with students and learn how data can tell a personal story.
*Lynn Hodges, director of UT’s Center for Enhancing Education in Mathematics and Sciences, is principal investigator on the NSF-funded project. Thura Mack, coordinator of Community Learning Services and Diversity Programs at the UT Libraries, is one of the Senior Project Personnel and is the lead coordinator of this community learning event. The UT Libraries frequently hosts events such as the upcoming MVP data event.
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