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RDP & Actua Continue Partnership to Extend Red Hot Science

Jul 02, 2024
Two children doing experiment in science lab

Red Deer Polytechnic (RDP) and Actua have renewed their partnership to continue offering central Alberta youth innovative science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) experiences. 

Recently, RDP received a renewed grant of $135,000 from Actua, Canada’s leading STEM youth outreach organization to continue advancing scientific discovery through the institution’s Red Hot Science program. This funding from Actua is through the Government of Canada’s Strategic Science Fund, intended to grow the nation’s science, technology and innovation communities. 

“We appreciate the ongoing collaboration and support from Actua,” says Dr. Robbie Halonen, Dean, Donald School of Science, Business and Computing. “Through the Red Hot Science program at RDP, central Alberta youth receive unique scientific exploration opportunities in collaboration with the Polytechnic’s faculty, staff and students. As a result, youth are inspired to pursue a career in STEM, helping to fulfill the needs of the province and nation.”

The Polytechnic’s Red Hot Science program, which is designed for students from kindergarten to grade 12, offers customizable hands-on activities while helping to remove barriers to STEM experiences. Classes and youth groups have several options for activities, including to learn more about technology and engineering. Students may also create simple coding, build robots and enhance their digital skills. In addition, youth can perform experiments in RDP’s Biology, Chemistry and Physics labs. 

In 2023, five Red Deer Polytechnic faculty and staff members and 15 RDP student volunteers engaged 2,500 youth, including 300 Indigenous youth, through the Red Hot Science program. In partnership with Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools, Indigenous Elders, leaders and organizations, the Polytechnic has also offered immersive Indigenous Land Camps as part of Actua funding. 

Indigenous high school students can earn academic credit by participating in specific Indigenous Land Camps, such as Four Seasons Land Camps, while expanding their knowledge about Indigenous ways of knowing and being. 

RDP offers more than 80 industry-relevant programs, which includes a variety of post-secondary STEM courses and programs to help prepare students for the labour force and advance innovation. As one example, RDP’s Machine Learning Analyst Diploma offers enhanced education and training opportunities to prepare students for evolving careers in artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Learn more about the Red Hot Science program at RDP.

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