Charles L. Sprague graduated from the Colorado School of Mines with a Bachelor of Science degree in Metallurgical/Materials Engineering in 1995. He worked in the engineering and computer world before turing his attention to teaching at his alma-mater, Wheat Ridge High School in 2000. Charles received his Masters of Arts in Curriculum Instruction during his third year teaching in the math department. In addtion to math, the subjects of Science and Drafting were also taught before creating a STEM program at the high school. The STEM program is currently in its 5th year and has been held as a model program for large, hands on projects in an engineering setting.
In his spare time Charles enjoys playing tennis and rebuilding his 57 Chevy.
“FASE is important because it will help allow students, teachers and schools to explore engineering, trades and hands on projects that they otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity to.”
B.S. Mineral Engineering Physics, Colorado School of Mines, May 1982 8 years (1982-1991) working at Rocky Flats plant as a lead engineer in a Manufacturing R&D group 27 years (1991-2017) working a NIST in Boulder Co running the Instrument shops for designing and manufacturing scientific instrumentation 11 years (2007-present) working as an instructor at UCD Mechanical Engineering Department 12 years (2006-present) working with Wheat Ridge High School on enhancing their STEM program
FASE is the opportunity to extend to a wider community what I have learned over the past decade in working with both high school and college students in the areas of advanced STEM. The ability of students to work outside the box and come up with solutions to problems is what has driven me.
A few personal interests/hobbies:
Restoring on old Jaguar, mechanical, body and woodwork.
Teaching students how to do CNC machining in metals and wood, including mills lathes, edm and routers.
Donny Seyfer is the co owner of Seyfer Automotive in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. Seyfer is also the full time Executive Officer for the National Automotive Service Task Force an initiative to advance education, information sharing and tool technology. Seyfer serves on the ASE Education Foundation Board of Governors, TechForce Foundation Advisory Council and is a 16 year industry educator with advanced vehicle technology as his speciality. Seyfer promotes the STEM approach to education nationally.
Griff Wirth has been in education for over 30 years, including more than 20 as a school principal. During his tenure he led the creation of innovation programs like the first magnet GT program in a neighborhood high school in the country, the WR STEM program and Career Explore for students on a path to drop out. He currently consults on various education initiatives. He spends free time with his family (wife, children and dogs!) and coaching whatever local youth sport team needs help.
FASE promotes relevant and engaging project-based learning that leads to the most meaningful outcomes for 21st century learners. Students highly engaged in this type of learning are curious, creative, entrepreneurial, collaborative and good problem solvers, in addition to having academic foundational skills to support their future.
Arik Heim has been teaching at Wheat Ridge High School for 22 years, which he also graduated from in 1981. Prior to becoming an educator, he was both a trial and corporate attorney. Although he teaches primarily Advance Placement History and Economics, he has also taught everything in the Social Studies curriculum except Sociology and Psychology.
He believes the model under which he began teaching 22 years ago was flawed because it insisted on making all students ready for college. This led to failing to meet the needs of students who were not college bound. Mr. Heim believes education lost something when it stopped teaching students to be skilled in technological, and craft-based fields.
Even though the majority of STEM students are college bound, Mr. Heim believes whether or not they pursue a higher degree, the skills learned in the STEM programs FASE supports engage students in school and prepares them for life in the real world.
In his spare time Mr. Heim reads, works out and pretends to play golf.