STEM Center Fostering the Innovative Minds of Tomorrow

Founder, Chairman, and CEO, Sovereign Health System, Dr. John Hajjar and Rodney De Jarnett, Head of School, Dwight-Englewood School, talk about the The Hajjar STEM Center and how it the center is helping create the STEM minds of tomorrow.

#2591 11/12/2016






"We are pleased to be joined once again by John Hajjar, founder, chairman, and CEO, Sovereign Health System, and Doctor Rodney De Jarnett, who is head of school... Dwight-Englewood School. Thank you so much for joining us. Thank you. It's a great story we have to tell here. This gentleman had three sons go to your school? Yes. Two twin boys and another young man? Right. They had a great experience at his school... Right ...and you decided to do what? Decided that I wanted to contribute, I wanted to give back to the school that had given tremendous education to my boys, and I was on the board of trustees, and we wanted to build something that was everlasting in the school, and they were always talking about a STEM building, so... A STEM building? Science, technology, engineering, and math? Yes, science, technology, that's correct. So Rodney approached me with the concept, and I knew about the concept prior to that, and one thing led to the other with his leadership, and his vision. We decided to put the... the program together, and that took us about over a period of two years? Mm hmm. To start getting people involved, and put the architecture designs together, and it turned out to be a wonderful building. And it is the Hajjar STEM Center. Describe it as we show some pictures. It's extraordinary. Go ahead. It's extraordinary because it's very unlike anything that you'll see anywhere else. We went all over the world, all over the country, looking at the best designs and the most recently built science STEM facilities. We wanted to create a facility where STEM education could really be integrated not only within the curriculum, so... By the way, I'm looking at pictures, go ahead keep talking. It is a while, basically where we could allow math, science, technology, engineering, and math to really blend together. So we created a science lab that is very unlike anyone else, where the emphasis is on doing science, not listening to science. Children really do it. The mathematics classes have no front of the room, there's no place where the teacher leads the class, it's the students learning. It's all about doing. We developed some really strong tenets for the building, and one is that you learn by doing. So the classrooms are really reflective of the students are gonna learn by doing what they do, and not listening. We did fun things like we took the engineering classes, and instead of putting them in a room where people wouldn't see it, we put the equipment in the labs, but the kids have to go outside, they're in the open spaces..."