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SPRINGFIELD — The STEM Starter Academy at Springfield Technical Community College (STCC) will feature a talk by an expert on opioid-use disorder today, July 21, from 11 a.m. to noon, the first in a series of events for students in the Summer Bridge program. The events, held over Zoom, are free and open to the public as well as students.

Today’s STEM Starter Academy presents Dr. Elizabeth Evans, a professor at the School of Public Health and Health Sciences at UMass Amherst. She specializes in opioids and other substances of abuse, women’s health, life course, social determinants, health-services utilization, and outcomes. She researches how healthcare systems and public policies can better promote health and wellness among vulnerable and underserved populations, particularly for individuals at risk for opioid and other substance-use disorders.

On Wednesday, July 28 from 10 to 11:30 a.m., the STEM Starter Academy will present a STEM Careers Symposium. The Zoom event will feature professors, scientists, and industry experts sharing their inspiring stories about STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). Anyone joining the event will learn about STEM career choices, challenges, demands, and opportunities.

Scheduled to speak are Robert O’Connor of the state office of Energy and Environmental Affairs; Shannon Roberts, a professor of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at UMass Amherst; Dr. John O’Reilly from the Division of General Pediatrics at Baystate Health; and Graziella DiRenzo, an ecologist at UMass Amherst.

To request a Zoom link to watch the series, e-mail Reena Randhir, director of the STEM Starter Academy at STCC, at [email protected].

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