Penn State Berks LION STEM Scholars attend inaugural S-STEM Scholars Meeting

Berks LION STEM Scholars

Pictured (left to right) are LION STEM Scholars Warren Reinhart, Mark Longenberger, Gabriel Regalado-Moya and Emmerson Velazques, along with their mentor Ryan Hassler.

Credit: Courtesy of Ryan Hassler

WYOMISSING, Pa. — Four Penn State Berks Leveraging Innovation and Optimizing Nurturing (LION) STEM Scholars were selected to from thousands of applicants to attend the inaugural S-STEM Scholars Meeting from Sept. 14 to 16 in Washington D.C. The meeting was co-hosted by the National Science Foundation and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  

The selected Penn State Berks students included Mark Longenberger and Warren Reinhart, both second-year mechanical engineering majors; Gabriel Regalado-Moya, second-year computer engineering major; and Emmerson Velazques, second-year electrical engineering major. Ryan Hassler, teaching professor of mathematics, served as a mentor for the group and delivered a workshop, along with Chris Lee professor of information technology at Florida State College at Jacksonville, titled "Selfless Over Selfish: How Community Engagement Enhances Your World." 

“I was honored to be selected as a mentor for the first ever S-STEM Scholars National Meeting this past weekend in Washington D.C. This meeting cultivated a supportive and inclusive environment for more than 900 S-STEM students from across the country,” Hassler said. “I am proud of our amazing Penn State Berks engineering students who were selected to attend. Their dedication and commitment to their future success was evident as they took part in several professional development workshops and various networking opportunities. The S-STEM community is strong, thriving and changing the narrative for so many students.” 

The 2023 S-STEM Scholars Meeting included information sessions, professional development workshops, and guidance on topics such as: internships, summer research programs, graduate school preparation, resume preparation and career planning. Scholars participated in targeted activities to connect with other scholars in similar STEM disciplines, education levels, regions, research areas and career pathways. Scholars also had the opportunity to connect with representatives across multiple industry sectors at the conference career fair.  

"The S-STEM meeting was an excellent opportunity to network and get connected with other scholars in similar STEM fields. I am honored to have had the opportunity to attend,” Longenberger said.  

“Being selected for the first annual S-STEM meeting was a great experience, I met many talented students with very interesting research and participated in a workshop for networking,” Velazques added. “Being a part of the LION STEM program has helped tremendously in building my network and learning how to build my engineering career before I even start it.” 

About Penn State Berks LION STEM Scholars 

Penn State Berks received a $750,000 grant from the National Science Foundation's Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S-STEM) program in January 2022. The grant was used to create the LION STEM Scholars Program, which provides support in the form of a four-year, renewable $6,250 scholarship to talented engineering students with demonstrated financial need. Students who meet the requirements will receive $25,000 over four years. In addition to scholarship funds, students also will receive academic support, mentoring and professional development through the LION STEM Scholars Program. A cohort of students will be enrolled in the program each year for three years, for a total of 18 scholars over the program period. For more information on the LION STEM Scholars Program, contact Hassler at 610-396-6127 or via email at [email protected].