Dickinson State science programs are off to a hot start this spring semester, reaffirming a commitment to providing students and the community with cutting-edge, hands-on education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

“We are excited about the dynamic education our science programs offer our students and the community,” stated Jinasena Hewage, DSU’s interim dean of the School of Applied Sciences (SoAS). “We are working hard to elevate what courses we offer and the hands-on learning experiences we give to our students and the community to help them pursue careers in various scientific fields.”

Dickinson State currently offers a wide range of science degrees in environmental science, biology, chemistry, engineering, and science education. As an exciting new development, Dr. Liz Freedman Fowler, assistant professor of biology, has implemented an upper-level course in paleontology, which is the scientific study of fossils to classify organisms and their interactions with each other and their environments.

“DSU is one of the only universities to offer an online upper-level paleontology discussion class,” stated Dr. Freedman Fowler. “There is a demand out there for advanced paleontology classes, and we are excited to bring this course to not only the Dickinson State community, but to a broad range of learners worldwide.”

Southwest North Dakota and Eastern Montana are dinosaur hotspots, yielding significant findings that attract paleontologists from around the world to the region. Furthermore, the Dickinson Dinosaur Museum is being renovated to expand its substantial dinosaur collections. The science course offerings in this field are well-timed to the interest of the public.

DSU’s science programs are also elevating the education they provide for their students and the region. Recently, the SoAS has been offering courses to the local community schools to raise awareness of STEM programming and to increase middle school and high school student interest in the field of science. DSU’s initiative to strengthen its science curriculum ensures that students receive a comprehensive and dynamic education that aligns with the latest advancements in scientific research and industry demands – not only in western North Dakota, but nationwide.

“We want to educate our local students about the programs here at Dickinson State,” continued Dean Hewage. “We want to raise our level of teaching, as well as provide these students with education to raise them up to the level they should be and to prepare them for not only successful careers, but to also be leaders in solving the scientific challenges of the future.”

Aside from the traditional classes DSU offers, SoAS has begun implementing numerous science events on campus this spring including DSU Science Day, Math Counts, an event that highlights math excellence and competition for sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students across North Dakota and nationally; and the annual Science Olympiad, co-sponsored by an international non-profit organization devoted to improving the quality of science education, increasing student interest in science, and providing recognition of outstanding achievement in science education by both students and teachers. These goals are accomplished through classroom activities, research, and training workshops. This year, the Southwest North Dakota Regional Competition is slated for Thursday, March 14 on DSU’s campus.

Another key component to the innovative education Dickinson State offers is the newly revamped DSU Discovery Domes. The portal full-dome theaters give students interactive views of roaring dinosaurs, fascinating planets and galaxies, explosive storms, and more. The domes offer a state-of-the-art visual learning experience that can address many different fields of science for any grade level.

We encourage area educators who would be interested in hosting us for a dome visit to contact our School of Applied Sciences at dsu.science@dickinsontate.edu or (701) 502-4405. We would love to have our science experts in your schools.

To learn more about the science programs at Dickinson State, please visit dickinsonstate.edu/soas.

Our science Hawks are up!