Lifelong Scholar Society

Florida Tech’s Lifelong Scholar Society is a community of curious minds who are passionate about sharing knowledge. Throughout the year, the society hosts a series of lectures. We are pleased to announce that our lectures will be at the Folliard Alumni Center. We will continue to have a virtual option for those who would still like to remain safe at home. Topics range from historical writers and contemporary art to the Florida habitat, space exploration, and more. Join us and become part of a world of exciting people!

Please join us for our upcoming Lifelong Scholar Society - Thursday Night Lectures. By utilizing a hybrid format with March 31 marking our return to in-person lectures and maintaining the virtual component via Zoom, this allows for the participants to join us globally. The virtual portion will be similar to the past couple of years, both by presentation and level of engagement. We look forward to “seeing” you, whether in-person or virtually!

Upcoming Lectures

Thursday, August 18, 6 PM EDT -- Hybrid Event (In-Person and Virtual)

Location of Event: Folliard Alumni Center, 2600 S. Country Club Road, Melbourne, FL 32901 across from Roberts Hall OR Zoom

Title: STEM Education Through Jet Dragster Racing

Description of Lecture: Larsen Motorsports is an award-winning innovator in the jet racing space. But it is also a proven leader in community outreach, STEM advocacy, and providing unique and valuable hands-on experiences to college students. Sounds a bit like Florida Tech, right? The Florida Tech/Larsen Motorsports partnership works because of what we have in common: a passion for STEM education, a can-do attitude, and a strong commitment to student success.

Presented by: Elaine and Chris

About the Presenters: Chris and Elaine Larsen are High School sweethearts, married for over 36 years, these two have a passion for motorsports. The two are originally from Northern Michigan and moved to Florida to fulfill their jet racing dreams.

They created Larsen Motorsports together, based here in Palm Bay, FL. The headquarters of Larsen Motorsports is embedded within the heart of Florida’s Space Coast manufacturing and technology corridor. Their 30,000 square foot facility reflects the ultimate blend of traditional manufacturing and the cutting edge of manufacturing technology; they are a leading research and development company with full concept, design, engineering and operational capabilities in house.

LMS partners with Florida Tech to provide hands-on opportunities for our students. Located just a short drive away from campus, Larsen Motorsports' headquarters gives students access to a working shop/laboratory that includes $8 million in equipment, tools, turbines, jet cars, etc. They also provide high-tech fabrication, jet turbine testing, and technician capabilities and expertise as well as mentors who are automotive industry experts, accomplished engineers and entrepreneurs. Our students have the chance to gain hands-on internships and research opportunities for all majors, including engineering, business, aeronautics, communication and science!

About working with our students, Elaine says, “I am really excited to drive the Florida Tech jet dragster, not only because I expect to bring my championship abilities to this great team, but also because this will allow me the opportunity to showcase to the world all of the hard work and dedication of students and faculty at Florida Tech,”. In 2015 Elaine completed a four-win season earning her second consecutive International Hot Rod Association world championship. She has taken anything but the traditional path to the dragster’s driver’s seat. Growing up a Mennonite, drag racing was not the most typical choice of careers. She headed into un-charted territory and never looked back. Today Elaine brings over 20 years of racing experience and multiple IHRA championships to the Florida Tech racing team. She has never let being a female in a male dominated world affect her in any way. "Drag Racing is the equalizer, on any given day, I have the same chance as anyone to win, it just has to be my day!" says Elaine.


Edit Page