The Health Sciences and Technology Academy: Re-Imagining Programmatic Delivery during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Out-of-school time academic/STEM programs provide educational enrichment to a myriad of student populations with some designed to assist those underrepresented and at-risk who desire to purse post-secondary studies. One such program in West Virginia (WV) is the Health Sciences and Technology Academy (HSTA), which provides hands-on, in person and engaging educational enrichment with the intent to increase the college going rates of Appalachia’s most vulnerable youth. In March 2020, HSTA key personnel encountered the task of redesigning program delivery due to the immediate shutdown of all in person operations resulting from the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-19 (COVID-19) pandemic. This paper discusses the programmatic changes of program delivery during HSTA’s key program components—the Summer Institute and the Community Based Programming. This paper also utilizes repeated measures one-way multivariate analysis (MANOVA) and paired t-test analysis to examine participants’ perspectives on learning, enjoyment and satisfaction of the aforementioned components prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic.