NA students interested in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) had the opportunity to work alongside Dr. So Yeon Yoon, a renowned expert in artificial intelligence and virtual reality. Dr. Yoon is a professor at Cornell University where she leads the Design for User Experience with Technology (DUET) research lab. Her work involves applications of virtual reality technology and the intersection between the science behind VR and the user experience. Dr. Yoon’s visit to the NA campus in November resulted in summer learning opportunities in Cornell’s DUET lab for six NA students -- Ryan Kim ’22, Molly Cantillon ’21, Kaya Patel ’22, Kayla Cohen ’21, Julia Seebach ’23 and Lizzie Schwartz ’21. Despite restrictions due to the pandemic, each of the NA students completed a virtual summer internship at the lab and were invited to present their projects at The MixedReality@Cornell Consortium, a professional cross-disciplinary conference focusing on virtual, augmented and mixed reality technologies.
Another STEM expert, Dr. Pradeep Kumar, a Senior Portfolio Manager at Prudential Investments, visited Newark Academy in February. Dr. Kumar spoke to the students about his career path that began with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. Later earning a Ph.D. in financial economics, he encouraged students with a variety of interests (e.g., arts and technology, math and music, etc.) to pursue all those interests and to recognize the importance of developing skills that are transferable and applicable to different professional fields. Today, Dr. Kumar’s work involves currency and bond trading in emerging global markets.
Throughout the school year, Newark Academy brings leading practitioners in STEM fields to campus to meet with interested NA students. These opportunities are among the many programs supported by gifts to the NA Annual Fund.