Having received a $669K grant from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Ferris State University is using the funds to bring VR educational experiences to 20 local schools
Ferris State University located in Michigan, USA, is aiming to bring VR educational experiences to 20 local schools after receiving a $669K grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The FerrisNow STEM Dual Enrollment Virtual Reality (FerrisNowVR) Initiative has been setup to bolster the number of STEM courses available to high school students in rural locations. It is hoped that these students will earn college credits through dual enrolment which will lead to certification in a variety of computer science based degrees.
The funding will enable students from 17 rural high schools and 3 career and technical institutions to participate in live virtual lessons from a number of designated remote locations. It is hoped that up to 5000 high school students from across 11 counties will be able to participate in the live immersive sessions.
“ The focus of this technology provides access to virtual dual enrollment education for high school students…The technology connects Ferris State University and students in rural communities. The equipment can be used for additional VR experiences to meet the needs of school districts and communities” Deedee Stakley, Director, Office of Transfer and Secondary School Partnerships
The grant is part of a larger $72 million investment across 40 states.
“ The immersive nature of VR allows students and faculty to interact naturally in a virtual environment… This eliminates any distance, travel, and density or weather restrictions and allows us to broadcast virtual educational content to high school partners throughout Western Michigan… ” Andrew Peterson, Coordinator, Instructional Technology for Extended and International Operations