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Pre-College Programs

A Unique Summer Exploration for High School Students

Western New England's Pre-college Programs are unique opportunities for rising sophomore, junior, and senior high school students to explore new ideas that will spark their passion and creativity. Students will discover new and exciting concepts that will not only put them light years ahead of their classmates, but will also jump start their futures.

This program will take place on August 5-9, 2019 (Session 1) and August 12-16, 2019 (Session 2) from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m and will be held on Western New England University campus. View the daily schedule here.

About the Program

  • CSI: Western New England

    Session 1

    Do you want to become a real-life Crime Scene Investigator and solve clues to uncover the culprit? CSI: Western New England will put you at the scene of a mock crime, where you’ll learn to conduct a thorough investigation and collect and analyze evidence to identify a perpetrator. Not only will you view a criminal investigation through the eyes of a forensic scientist, but you’ll actually get to investigate your own crime scene through the four areas of forensics: trace evidence, serology and patterned evidence, ballistics, and biometrics.

    Students may opt to take this as a one-session stand-alone experience, or as a two-week joint course with Trial Skills, where you will take the collected evidence and build a case in court. See Trial Skills.

    Instructor: Katherine Wahlund
    Science Teacher, East Longmeadow High School 

    Kate Wahlund has been teaching high school science for 20 years in Seattle and at East Longmeadow High School. A perpetual student herself, she has earned an undergraduate B.S. degree in Biology, Chemistry, and Education from Keene State College; an M.S. in Science and Special Education from Antioch University; pursued Ph.D. studies in curriculum and instruction from Capella University; and Advanced Graduate Certification in forensic science with concentrations in Serology & DNA from University of Florida. Kate has designed and implemented a successful two-course forensics program at East Longmeadow High School.

  • Trial Skills

    Session 2

    If you see yourself as a high-powered attorney defending your clients in the court of law and bringing criminals to justice, then Trial Skills is the perfect place to have your first day in court. After learning how to prepare a case for trial and how to deliver an opening statement, closing argument, and direct and cross examinations, students will be divided into teams of prosecutors and defense attorneys, who present the case to a jury with an exciting mock trial in our own model courtroom to end the course.

    Students may opt to take this as a one-week stand-alone experience, or as a two-week joint course with CSI: Western New England, which is the perfect segue to take the evidence you’ve collected and bring it all to court. See CSI: Western New England.

    Instructor: Tina Cafaro
    Clinical Professor of Law, Director of the Criminal Law Clinics

    In addition to being a full-time member of the WNE School of Law faculty, Professor Cafaro is currently a special assistant district attorney in both the Hampden and Northwestern District Attorney's Offices. She began her legal teaching career in 1999 as an adjunct professor in the Criminal Law Clinic at Western New England University School of Law and joined the full-time faculty in 2001. Before joining the law faculty, she was an assistant district attorney in the Hampden County District Attorney’s Office. Prior to that, she served as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Kent B. Smith of Massachusetts Appeals Court.

  • Introduction to STEM and Robotics

    Session 2

    If the idea of engineering and working with your hands to build an innovative prototype excites you, then this is the place to put your innovative mind and technical know-how to the test! Based on the “hackerspace” concept (which challenges students to build something useful from various components that are provided) this workshop is project-based and hands-on. You’ll learn how to build electronic circuits using various sensors and actuators, program a microcontroller to perform specific tasks, and finally to make your own working robot.

    Instructor: Dr. Neeraj Magotra
    Chair and Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering

    Dr. Neeraj Magotra is a recognized expert in digital signal/image processing and low power embedded system technologies with over 40 years of combined experience in industry and academia. He has previously worked at Sandia National Laboratories, University of New Mexico, and Texas Instruments Incorporated.