Welcome to SARSEF

Creating Arizona’s Next Generation of Critical Thinkers and Problem Solvers through Science and Engineering.

SARSEF stands against racial inequality. Equity is a core value our organization strives to achieve daily. However, equity in education, science and engineering will never be achieved without action and a broader recognition of the impact racial injustice has in our daily lives.

As SARSEF families and community members, we teach our kids to make observations, ask questions, collect data, and form their own conclusions. As images of protests and police violence flash across our screens, many of us grapple with how to talk to kids about what they’re seeing and what it means for our nation. This can feel like a difficult conversation to start.

But these conversations are crucial. Adults and children alike need to take the last step in scientific research – the hardest one – using what they learn to build a better future.

The data has been gathered, for decades, for centuries. The conclusion is clear – systemic racism exists and has fatal consequences. Now is the time for action. Black Lives Matter.

If you are a parent, caretaker or teacher looking for ways to talk to kids about racism, here is a resource that might help.



Project and Award Pick-Up

We are grateful for your patience and understanding and have decided to mail certificates and checks out to the students’ mailing addresses provided on the registration form. If your child is missing their award, please reach out and let us know here: director@sarsef.org or call at 520-273-8259

Please note, if your child wins an award totaling $600 or greater, we will need a completed W-9 form (with the student’s social security number.)

Save The Date!

SARSEF Fair 2021: March 3rd – 6th, 2021

Meet our 2020-2021 Programs


What Do You Wonder? A Community of Young Scientists

SARSEF’s FIRST completely virtual program in response to COVID-19 invites students pre-k through high school to become lead researchers on a virtual research team.  Students discuss and identify interests, select a single research question from collective wonderings, design a method for gathering data to answer the question, and together analyze and evaluate the results to get a snapshot of our southern Arizona community in April/May 2020. Learn more at https://sarsef.org/programs/whatdoyouwonder/!

In-school Experiences

SARSEF teaches PreK-12 students the critical thinking and problem-solving skills they need to make a difference using science and engineering. Through hands-on workshops students are challenged to investigate real-life problems finding solutions that matter.

Out-of-School Experiences

SARSEF removes the classroom walls, engaging students in the broader community. Students will be hosted in our NEW SARSEF Outreach Labs at UofA and see science in action with local industry partners and even a field research site at the American Museum of Natural History location in Portal, AZ! These experiences and more will allow students to explore STEM careers and serve as science ambassadors at Tucson’s favorite community events!

Professional Development for Teachers

Teachers will gain confidence and skills in teaching science and engineering while learning to integrate the new AZ Science Standards into hands-on research projects. Teachers will explore thought-provoking activities, lesson design and resources to make science and engineering experiences accessible to all students.

Roadmap to a Rockin’ Project

Parents and Students work together to identify an issue they care about and are guided in the development of a science or engineering research project. Students leave ready to investigate their topic, with a roadmap for their research journey, a lab notebook and project board.


ACES (Applied Career Exploration in STEM) provides a week of science camp for 50 middle school girls at a critical time in their lives. Students are exposed to STEM careers and experience campus life, exciting them to pursue higher education in STEM.

Racing the Sun

Racing the Sun challenges high school teams to design, build, and race solar-powered go-karts. Working alongside mentors, students spend nine months preparing their go-karts, applying physics, engineering and energy. Students are challenged to translate their ideas into a working kart, and gain critical skills for workplace success along the way.


Arizona STEM Adventure November 20, 2020 – 1,000 4-8th grade students explore the wide world of STEM while their teachers receive two hours of Professional Development. Get involved NOW!

SARSEF Science and Engineering Fair March 3-6, 2021 – This culminating event of all SARSEF programs provides the 90,585 students we impact each year the opportunity to win over $100,000 in scholarships, trips, and prizes to reward them for their high-quality research.

What is SARSEF?

You Matter

The one life that is changed with your gift, might be the very one that changes ours one day.

Your monthly gift of $10, $20, $50 $100 $250 is appreciated.

Donate Now

Want to find out more about what it means to think critically? https://sarsef.org/home/critical-thinking-problem-solving/

SARSEF Office at 4574 E. Broadway Blvd. Tucson AZ 85711

(520) 273-8259

Every Child. Thinking Critically. Solving Problems.