Our Commitment to K-12 Education

Providing Inspiration for Future Generations

We take seriously our commitment to bring the wonders of science, technology, and math to K-12 students, and we embrace our responsibility to inspire the next generation of physicists. That's why we are highly engaged in many programs designed to introduce physics to K-12 students in our community.

Faculty members and students in our department donate their time and expertise to a number of different events catering to K-12 students including:

The Department of Physics Annual Goddard Cup/Water Rocket Competition

This annual competition was designed to honor the "Father of Modern Rocketry," Dr. Robert H. Goddard, who graduated in 1908 from WPI, and to bring the world of science and physics closer to local K-12 students. This annual competition began in 2008 when WPI held a year-long observance of the centennial of his graduation.

Teams compete for prizes by launching three water rockets at a large ring from a specific distance. The closest rocket wins a trophy for the school, medals for themselves, and their names are engraved on a plaque that hangs in the Physics Department lounge. Learn more…

Summer Programs

Summer programs at WPI offer students ages 7-17 the opportunity to explore new things, test the limits of their imaginations, and have fun. Academic programs are led by WPI faculty members and students and allow participants to take part in activities in our laboratories and use state-of- the-art equipment and software.

The department of Physics participates in these events by setting up activities and experiments, giving tours of our laboratory spaces, and providing explanations of our cutting-edge instruments. Learn more…

The STEM Education Center

Physics faculty members are part of the innovative STEM Education Center at WPI which improves preparedness of primary and secondary school teachers so that they can better educate and engage young people in the critical disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and math. Learn more…

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