The GeoPaths Legends Program is a National Science Foundation (NSF) funded effort to use the visually beautiful geologic setting of southern Nevada and the geoscience research capabilities at UNLV to generate enthusiasm for the earth sciences among southern Nevada youth. This objective is being accomplished through a comprehensive program that includes:
1) Building a professional earth science learning community to facilitate collaboration between local high school teachers and UNLV faculty and students;
2) Generating high school earth science curriculum materials based on the spectacular local geologic resources that will provide STEM education while also introducing potential career paths in the Earth sciences;
3) Creating a service learning course that will pair undergraduate ‘geoscience ambassadors’ with high school classes that are utilizing the newly developed curriculum materials; and
4) Engaging high school students and teachers in locally relevant geoscience research projects.
Our name, GeoPaths Legends has two parts. GeoPaths is the name of the NSF program whose goal is to build pathways for young people to become engaged in geoscience. Legends is the name of our local program and stands for ‘Leveraging the Geology of Nevada to Diversify STEM’. We chose our name because it reminds us of the amazing stories told by our local landscape and natural environment; how our landscape came to be and how it functions today.