National EAST conference set for Hot Springs

Staff Writer

More than 2,000 EAST students from around the country are gearing up for the 2015 EAST Conference “Create Today, Improve Tomorrow” at the Hot Springs Convention Center March 17 - 19. The national conference will showcase and celebrate a year’s worth of student work and community projects, and feature keynote speakers Kevin Delaney, Director of Visitor Experience at the Museum of Discovery, and Julia Sites, EAST alumna.


Delaney is an artist and educator based out of Little Rock. He has been performing since he was a child and teaching since 2003 and has been creating science-based theatre and musical pieces for schools, libraries, zoos and museums since 2009. In 2014 he began appearing as the resident science educator for the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Sites was one of the first EAST high school graduates in 1996 at Greenbrier High School. She recently served on the EAST Initiative Board of Directors and is currently an IT Specialist at Southwest Power Pool in Little Rock.

“I see EAST as the most effective tool in education for truly preparing students for their futures, giving them opportunities to explore their potential,” said Sites.


EAST students excel in skills developed through projects built on cutting-edge technology, teamwork, problem solving, service and innovation. In addition to the countless other projects, the EAST Initiative determines a national service emphasis for student exploration and participation. This year, EAST partnered with the Arkansas Tech University Department of Emergency Management to focus on “Emergency Planning and Preparedness” projects. The National Service Project allowed EAST students to learn more about resources available to them and how they could develop projects to create more efficient emergency plans if disaster strikes in their communities.

Along with highlighting their projects in the exhibit hall, EAST students will network with other students, attend informative breakout sessions and mingle with business professionals from several industries. There is also a host of hands-on experiences through the World of Tomorrow Workshop and the Maker Space.

The public is invited to visit Conference exhibits and learn more about the EAST Initiative Wednesday, March 18 from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and Thursday, March 19 from 8:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. There is no charge for the public to attend during the designated times.

Several Conference events will be broadcast in real time on the EAST You Tube channel at HYPERLINK "http://www.youtube.com/user/easthq" bit.ly/EASTyoutube, including the Open Plenary March 17, the Awards Banquet March 18, and the Tech Support Olympiad and Closing Session March 19.

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