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  • Solving real-world problems

    with innovative thinking.
    The STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) program at Rabun Gap spans across all three divisions. STEAM promotes creative problem solving, design thinking, and traditional hands-on skills to prepare students for the future.

    In the Upper School, the STEAM department offers elective classes where students can delve into engineering and design thinking, working on self-directed projects in the Dess Oliver STEAM Center. We also offer classes focused on computer science and machine learning. You’ll find our STEAM students analyzing trends on social media, rebuilding a classic Mini Cooper, and testing water quality in nearby streams. Our STEAM Director facilitates the inclusion of STEAM into the curriculum across all grade levels.
Students of all ages can participate in the STEAM program as an afternoon activity. These after school sessions are led by our divisional STEAM coordinators.

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The Dess Oliver STEAM Center

Named after legendary Rabun Gap industrial arts teacher Mr. Dess Oliver, the STEAM Center on campus is a state-of-the-art, dedicated space for STEAM classes and afterschool programs. The building houses:
  • 3D-printers
  • Metalworking shop and tools
  • Woodworking shop and tools
  • Classroom space

Our STEAM Projects

Lower School STEAM

Students in PreK through fifth-grade are introduced to the STEAM model through learning to code, building simple machines, and completing design challenges. Those who participate in the afterschool program also have the opportunity to explore STEAM. Projects have included building tricycles and creating an aquaponics system.

Middle School STEAM

Middle School STEAM is offered as an after school activity and is incorporated into the curriculum with the Middle School’s Makerspace. Teachers also regularly incorporate hands-on STEAM projects into their classes, with access to the Augmented Reality Sandbox and Outdoor Classroom.  Projects have included designing birdhouses and studying salamander habitats.

Our STEAM Team

List of 2 members.

  • Photo of Brian Phillips

    Brian Phillips 98

    Upper School Science & STEAM Teacher
  • Photo of Maggie Renken

    Maggie Renken 

    Director of Modern Learning
Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School is a private, coeducational day and boarding school for grades Pre-K through 12. Centrally located between Atlanta, GA, Greenville, SC, and Asheville, NC, we prepare young people for college, career, and a lifetime of leadership and service.