Empowerment Day

Friday, November 12, 2021

Empower. Educate. Connect. Give Back.


November 12th will be NWA TechFest’s Empowerment Day.

It will connect 6-12 grade students with opportunities to further their passions, education, and careers!

While Thursday will enrich those currently working in our technology, Friday will empower students with knowledge of their local community, including how to further educational, employment, and charitable opportunities in NWA. The focus will be on what it’s like to work in STEM careers through interaction with STEM professionals and hands-on activities.


Our keynote speaker on Friday is John Weis, NASA Education Program Specialist!

His topic is “The Artemis Generation: There’s space for you to build with NASA”.

John Weis is a NASA Education Program Specialist at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. He previously served 15 years as a contractor Education Specialist working with NASA, responsible for educational outreach including professional development for pre-service and in-service teachers, community programs and liaising with state and local education agencies in the Marshall region of Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, Alabama and Tennessee.

John earned a BS in Science and Mathematics Teaching with an emphasis in Mathematics and Physics from the Florida State University and an MS in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Scranton. Before joining NASA education, he spent 10 years as a secondary science teacher in Volusia County, Florida. His areas of specialization include Mathematics, Physics, Earth/Space Science, and Astronomy.

Check out the November 12th schedule below!

Time Event
7:30 – 8:00 Breakfast
8:00 – 8:30 Non-Student Introduction
8:30 – 8:50 Non-Student Introduction + Student Attendee Arrival
9:00 – 9:50 Keynote Speaker: John Weis, NASA
9:50 – 10:00 Break
10:00 – 10:30 Breakout 1 – Multiple Tracks
10:30 – 10:40 Break
10:40 – 11:10 Breakout 2 – Multiple Tracks
11:10 – 11:20 Break
11:20 – 11:50 Breakout 3 – Multiple Tracks
11:50 – 1:00 Lunch
1:00 – 1:30 Afternoon Keynote
1:30 – 1:50 Grants, Awards, and Closing Statements
1:50 – 2:00 Break + Student Departure
2:00 – 2:50 Community Involvement + Next Steps Q&A
2:50 End of Conference

*Schedule subject to change


We are focusing on connecting students with STEM professionals, so they can learn more about STEM careers from experts in the field. Before the conference, check out this resource of STEM careers and apprenticeships in NWA!