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CAP Remembers its STEM Education Origins on National STEM-STEAM Day

November 8, 2021

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South Dakota Wing, Civil Air Patrol, today commemorates its eighth decade of STEM Education on National STEM-STEAM Day.

“STEM (science, technology, education and math) is an important part of the overall Civil Air Patrol program for members,” said Col. Nick Gengler, South Dakota Wing commander. “But for decades, CAP has also offered aerospace education to the general public. In particular, we offer aerospace curriculum to teachers, including excellent STEM kits.”

Beginning in the 1950s, Civil Air Patrol invested significant resources in public aerospace education, with an emphasis on exposing teachers and elementary school students to the science of flight. One of the first efforts was CAP’s Model Building Kit, provided to educators for their students.

Today, CAP offers do-it-yourself science kits to CAP educator members to help prepare the future STEM workforce.

"The wing's new portable wind tunnel has been a hit with not just our Cadets and Senior Members, but also with youngsters and college students," said Lt. Col. Todd Epp, SDWG chief of staff overseeing Aerospace Education. "This professionally looking member-made science device makes high-end STEM education fun and accessible to everyone, which is part of our CAP mission."

Epp noted that educators may join the special Aerospace Education CAP membership category at any time. 

“The STEM kits come at no cost to teachers who have joined the Civil Air Patrol aerospace education member program,” Epp said. “A one-time membership fee of $35 opens the door to the free STEM kits, which are designed to enhance the educational curriculum and programs, and are ready for immediate implementation.”

Epp encourages teachers and curriculum designers to learn more at:


Tagged As: Aerospace/STEM Cadet Programs

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