Welcome to the Trailer


Jacob Stofer, Managing Editor

Two million men and women in the Army actively keep Americans safe each and every day. Without their honor and sacrifice, the way people live life would not be the same.

However, people might not know that non-combat jobs exist. The Army works with the communities in the United States and around the world to educate others. They give back to the communities one way by using the S.T.E.M Trailer. An acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics came to Olathe East on September 19. The Biology, Industrial and Communication Technology classes got to experience the program hands on to educate others on what they might not know about S.T.E.M.

“S.T.E.M is a very general category for our subjects. Generally consider the application of Science and Math, the synthesis across discipline. The STEM Trailer is intended to support awareness and understanding of what that means out in the field,” Biology teacher Michael Ralph said.

Staff Sergeant Holmes, one of the commanders, talked about what this trailer represents, and how it relates to the community, including the classes at Olathe East.

“What the Trailer does is show a fictional scenario and for kids to get out of the classroom and apply what they know in classroom, in a not-so far but fictional event. [When they enter the trailer for the first time], they go into a briefing room, where they get briefed on a incident that occurs in 2032. They move into another room, where they learn about some technology that can help with civilians, and help apply what they learned and save civilians in a simulation,” Holmes said.

From the USA ARMY website: “The year is 2032 and a radical political faction has threatened to undermine world security. A news agency has just released a report on an explosion in an eastern European chemical plant, and the U.S. Army is on high alert. It’s now up to you and your team to rescue the trapped workers in the plant.”

Scheduling the Army and setting up this event comprise of two different things. This took planning and coordination. All of the Biology teachers took their classes to the Trailer, including Biology teacher Tiffany Richards, coordinator of the event.

“Officer Jaegers spoke with one of our Army recruiters, and it was originally supposed to go to Olathe Northwest, however they (Northwest) couldn’t handle it in their parking lot. Since it is a trailer that is going across the United States, it was a one-time opportunity for us to get it. Jaegers talked to me, and I had arranged it with the all of the biology teachers, so an entire class could go through,” Richards said.

Besides science classes, the Technology Educational Department experienced the programs of the trailer as well. The classes of Lance Larson, and John McDonald talked about how the Technology classes apply to the T in the STEM Program.

“The STEM program is something we do within our department, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. An initiative that we embed throughout what we do. We are always trying to offer out students any opportunities that they can have with STEM training. For instance, last year, I was able to go to the Navy S.E.A.L.S base out in San Diego, California and part of that was STEM training for what the Navy has to offer. With the Army coming in, we wanted to see what the Army has to offer what student capabilities”, McDonald said.

The student’s perspectives furthered the experiences learned, since the students themselves participate in the stem trailer. Students of Richards, Lawrence Woodruff, and Jacob Gunn’s freshmen classes got to experience the trailer. One of those students talked about the experience as she went through.

“[Gunn] didn’t really tell us what we were doing, we went outside and saw this big trailer. When I saw it, I got really excited, because my uncle is in the Army and he got transferred to Kansas, along with his wife, [it was a really personal moment for me],” Freshmen Decaria Harris said.

The skills that these young men and woman apply to the Trailer are a wide variety: Problem Solving, Common Sense, and much more. Students that went through the trailer will always remember.


Jacob Stofer // Managing Editor