Napavine Hosting New Market STEM Labs for Lewis County High Schoolers


Napavine High School’s career and technical education (CTE) department, in collaboration with New Market Skills Center in Tumwater, will offer three classes, including two in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields and one in welding and small engines, to Lewis County high school students this summer.

David Rutherford, Napavine’s CTE instructor, said these summer labs are open to any student living in the county that will be in grades nine through 12 next year. The labs are free. Students must make their own accomodations for transportation.

Each class session is 16 days long and runs from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. One session is equivalent to 0.5 credits for high schoolers, according to the school.

Session No. 1, which runs June 28 through July 20, will feature a class titled “Solve REAL Problems and Make REAL Money?” Students will work to solve problems — from preventing malaria to designing a better van for Volkswagen — and submit their ideas to InnoCentive, a crowdsourcing company that “pays people to solve problems.”

Session No. 2 will feature two other engaging labs, which run from July 21 to Aug. 11.

“Using STEM for Emergency Drone Response” will teach students how to pilot a drone through various tasks and challenges while learning about design, flight techniques and potential careers.

“Do You Like to Go Fast?” places students in pit crews to modify small engines, build their own go-karts and “enhance their welding skills” in order to compete against each other to see who can build the faster vehicle.

Applications are due by 3 p.m. Saturday, June 5, to Rutherford. Information and applications can be found by emailing him at