U.S. Olympic diver Chris Colwill visited middle and high school students at Faith Outreach Academy in Tampa for a STEM career assembly. As part of the event hosted by DeVry and Step Up For Students, Colwill shared how science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) can play a role in preparing an athlete to compete in the Olympic Games.

More than 50 students participated in the assembly – The Science and Technology behind Team USA – a new high school program presented by DeVry University, a part of DeVry’s family of educational institutions, designed to introduce STEM and STEM careers to students. DeVry is an official education provider to Team USA, with nearly 80 Olympic hopefuls enrolled in DeVry University and its Keller Graduate School of Management.

The Science and Technology behind Team USA is a dynamic presentation that showcases how professionals educated in STEM fields help bring the Olympic Games to life. Students learned about how nutritionists develop diets for peak athletic performance, how footwear is designed differently for sprinters versus runners, and the science behind the design of the Olympic Park that required civil engineers demolish 200 buildings, build 30 new bridges and clean two million tons of soil. They also discussed the STEM careers that develop high-demand products such as video games, movies, makeup and cars.

“At DeVry, our mission is to help educate the nation’s future workforce and prepare our students for their future success,” said Nicole Bethune-Walker, DeVry University Tampa center dean, who participated in the STEM career assembly. “We know careers in STEM are growing faster than any other career field; yet fewer and fewer high school graduates are pursuing STEM-related degree programs in college. DeVry aims to help high school educators bridge that gap and make STEM more appealing and exciting for students.”

The STEM career assembly was hosted at Faith Outreach Academy, a school that participates in the Step Up scholarship program. Step Up For Students is the nonprofit organization that administers the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, and awards K-12 scholarships to low-income Florida families at more than 1,300 schools across the state. The program is funded by corporate tax redirections from organizations like DeVry. Step Up For Students has awarded more than 50,000 scholarships this year to Florida students, 98 of whom attend Faith Outreach Academy.

“We are proud to partner with DeVry to ensure our children have access to the tools they need to create a bright and successful future,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “We are grateful that DeVry is supporting our scholarship program, while also taking the initiative to help the students of today become the scientists, researchers, technology developers, astronauts and engineers of tomorrow. It is wonderful to see a company giving back in this way.”

During the STEM career assembly, Friday, Feb. 15, Colwill shared his experiences from the London 2012 Olympic Games, details about his rigorous training schedule, and how science and technology helped make his success possible.

“To have a perfect dive, you have to have a lot of things go right before and after you leave the diving platform,” Colwill said. “We are measuring vertical and horizontal velocity, as well as rotation – the actual physics of a perfect dive.”

About DeVry

DeVry’s purpose is to empower its students to achieve their educational and career goals. DeVry (NYSE: DV; member S&P MidCap 400 Index) is a global provider of educational services and the parent organization of Advanced Academics, American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, Becker Professional Education, Carrington College, Carrington College California, Chamberlain College of Nursing, DeVry Brasil, DeVry University, Ross University School of Medicine and Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. These institutions offer a wide array of programs in business, healthcare, technology, accounting and finance. For more information, please visit http://www.devryinc.com.

About Step Up For Students

Step Up For Students is the nonprofit organization responsible for administering the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship program. The scholarship program is available to students who qualify for a free or reduced-price lunch and provides tuition assistance to the private school of their parents’ choice or transportation help to an out-of-district public school. Scholarships are funded by corporations that receive a dollar-for-dollar tax credit for their contributions. For more information, visit www.stepupforstudents.org.

Copyright Business Wire 2010