STEM Academy Pathways
The WHS STEM Academy is an exciting STEM environment for our students. I'm often asked, "What makes Walton's STEM academy different from any other STEM program?" Our STEM Academy offers a cohort environment for our students which allows the students to develop relationships with like-minded peers both inside and outside the walls of the school. This is a nurturing, encouraging environment that allows our students to develop their skill-sets and their passion for the areas of STEM where their talents lie. Our STEM faculty is an amazing and dedicated group of teachers. Beyond what STEM Academies typically offer, we offer a rich history of academic achievement. Outside of the STEM Academy, the student body of Walton is highly motivated and academically competitive. We strongly encourage our students to be involved in extracurricular activities that broaden their exposure not only to STEM related fields, but the social sciences, fine arts, athletics, etc. A student leaving the Walton STEM Academy not only is prepared for university, but also is prepared for life.
Dr. Tina Link
STEM Academy Director
The Walton High School Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Academy offers students a rigorous curriculum driven by problem solving and discovery in a student- centered environment. In accordance with the Georgia Department of Education STEM goals, the Walton STEM Academy will:
Instruct through rigorous and relevant curriculum
Empower students to become innovators and technologically proficient problem solvers
Ensure that all students have access to the appropriate technology conducive to enhancing their STEM learning experiences both in and outside the traditional classroom
Nurture partnerships that allow schools and the business sector to join efforts to improve students’ STEM-career opportunities
Increase the number of students pursuing careers in STEM-related fields and/or post-secondary STEM related education/training
The Walton STEM academy is designed for students who have a desire and passion to pursue one of three majors: Advanced Science and Mathematics, Engineering or Biomedical Science. Students accepted to the STEM academy will take 4 years of their major along with 4 honors and/or AP science courses. Additional STEM requirements include:
9th and 10th grade: involvement in a school sponsored individual or group competition. For example, HOSA, Math Team, Science Olympiad, and Robotics
10th or 11th grade: a 40-hour internship in a STEM related area. This could include a camp, Governor’s Honors Program (GHP), shadowing a professional, etc.
12th grade: students must take part in a cumulative research project from the perspective of their major. The senior EDD course for engineering and the senior BI course for the biomedical pathway fulfill this requirement. The advanced math and science students can fulfill this requirement either with an independent research project, to be approved by the STEM director, or taking the AP Capstone sequence of two courses which culminates with AP Research.
Students are admitted into the specific STEM academy major in their freshman year. Acceptance of admission into Walton’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Academy implies that a student will remain an Academy student throughout their high school career in order to earn STEM designation on their Walton diploma.
Each major within the STEM Academy focuses on a particular interest of the student; therefore, the admission standards and course sequences differ.
Advanced Math and Science
The Advanced Mathematics/Science student is curious about math and science beyond the classroom. The student is able to see relationships between and among topics intuitively, and recognizes the symbiotic relationship between math and science. The student has a strong work ethic and understands that teamwork is an essential part of success because the creative minds of many outperform the individual.
Students who wish to apply to the STEM Advanced Mathematics/Science Academy must be recommended for Accelerated Geometry/Advanced Algebra and Honors level Science. Students accepted in this major will take 4 years of advanced Mathematics and 4 AP Science courses. The following information table outlines the projected Advanced Mathematics/Science courses. This table serves as a guide to inform students and parents of the general course direction to achieve the STEM Advanced Mathematics/Science endorsement, and is subject to change in order to accommodate the needs of the school and personnel.
9th Grade 10th Grade 11th Grade 12th Grade
Accelerated Geom/Advanced Algebra Accelerated Precalculus BC *AP Calculus BC *Multivariable Calculus or
Distance Calculus with Georgia Tech
and Independent Study Capstone Project
AP Environmental Science AP Chemistry AP Physics C AP Biology
*Students are encouraged to take AP Statistics as an additional class during 10th or 11th grade.
The Engineering student has a natural curiosity for how things work. The student is able to apply creative solutions to problems that may not have concrete answers. The engineering student enjoys math and science and seeing how these subjects apply to problems. Additionally, the student understands that brain power alone is not enough to be a successful engineer and student, but hard work in class and meeting assignment deadlines is essential. The student must understand that teamwork is an essential part of engineering because the creative minds of many outperform the lone genius. The engineering student is enthusiastic about engineering whether it is for one particular field or the aspect of problem solving as a whole. The Engineering courses use Project Lead the Way curriculum which is national recognized for excellence.
Students who wish to apply to the STEM Engineering Academy must be recommended for at least CCGPS Algebra Enriched and Honors level Science. Students accepted in this major will take 4 years of Engineering courses and 4 honors & AP Science courses. The following information table outlines the projected courses for an Engineering major. This table serves as a guide to inform students and parents of the general course direction to achieve the STEM Engineering endorsement, and is subject to change in order to accommodate the needs of the school and personnel.
9th Grade 10th Grade 11th Grade 12th Grade
Intro to Engineering Design Principles of Engineering Aerospace Engineering Engineering Design and Development**
or Digital Electronics
Honors Biology Honors Chemistry AP Physics 1 AP Physics 2
*Students are encouraged to take AP Statistics as an additional class during 11th or 12th grade.
**Students will complete a Capstone project as part of this course.
The biomedical student has as interest in pursuing a career within the medical field. Because of the embedded on- and off-campus internship opportunities within this pathway, the foundation of this interest is based on the student’s enjoyment in helping people. The biomedical student must be responsible and motivated by knowing they can make a difference in the lives of others. The student must be able to work independently and as a team member in promoting health and wellness. The student must be able to both think critically and to formulate a solution or series of solutions related to various health issues. The biomedical student is excited about medicine, how it changes and the endless possibilities of new discoveries. The Biomedical Science courses use Project Lead the Way curriculum which is national recognized for excellence.
Students who wish to apply to the STEM Biomedical Science Academy must be recommended for at least CCGPS Algebra Enriched and Honors level Science. Students accepted in this major will take 4 years of biomedical science courses and 4 honors & AP Science courses. The following information table outlines the projected courses for a Biomedical Sciences major. This table serves as a guide to inform students and parents of the general course direction to achieve the STEM Biomedical Sciences endorsement, and is subject to change in order to accommodate the needs of the school and personnel.
9th Grade 10th Grade 11th Grade 12th Grade
Principals of Biomedical Science Human Body Systems Medical Interventions Biomedical Interventions**
Honors Biology Honors Chemistry AP Biology AP Physics 1
**Students will complete a capstone project as part of this course.