UTeach Arkansas Scholarship Contest: Win $5K in 15 Seconds

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FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM)- A new scholarship contest is available for Arkansas high school seniors who plan to major in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) field in college.

Emily Sherill, 18, is a Rogers High School senior. She applied for the UATeach Scholarship.

"I want to be a civil engineer," Sherill said. "I want to make buildings, bridges and highway systems."

The mission of UTeach Arkansas is to develop STEM professionals and teachers for Arkansas.  Click here to view our previous story on how and why UTeach was adopted in Arkansas.

Sherill said her dream to become a civil engineer started in the 4th grade when she built the Eiffel Tower out of toothpicks.

"Being able to get an education is one thing that not many people get," she said. "I really want to do this right and make this count.

Three Arkansas high school seniors will be declared winners of the UTeach Scholarship Contest.  Each of the three scholarship winners will receive a $5,000 scholarship package which includes: $2,500 tuition credit at the U of A, UCA, or UALR; $1,500 laptop; $750 book voucher; and a $250 graphing calculator.

In the UATeach program, students don't use textbooks. It's all hands on, said Sheri Vaughn, assistant director for the UATeach program.

"Anytime that we have an opportunity to blow stuff up, we jump all over it because that's a teaching opportunity," Vaughn said.

Students get their bachelor's degree in math or science and a minor in education. This allows them to teach in the state of Arkansas without a master's degree.

Students teach students as early as the third grade, Vaughn said.

"We're targeting students that are here because we have such a need in Arkansas, so we're working hard to recruit those students," she said.

The entry process is simple.  Entrants fill out a short form, and provide a link to a :15 second video that demonstrates a STEM concept of their choice.  Sound simple enough?  Get the camera rolling, and enter your STEM concept video here.  You can also check out some of the video entries.

The deadline to apply for the scholarship is November 30th. They expect to announce the winners December 15th.