Stratosphere 2020 will be held over the month of June, 2020. Teacher registration is now closed. Registered teachers can view their profile here.

We are excited to announce Stratosphere, a month-long online lecture series where high school students have the chance to take hour long classes taught by undergraduates. Organized by members of the UR Splash team*, this event will run through the month of June, 2020. On every Saturday in June, from 2 to 3 PM Eastern Time, we will be offering a wide variety of free online classes open to high school students across the United States.

Teachers are a core part of this event. If you are an undergraduate student and have a passion for teaching, we encourage you to register a class! Teacher registration is open here, and will close at 11:59 PM on Friday, May 15. At this moment, we are allowing teachers to register up to two classes. You may also co-teach a class if you wish.


  • You can teach about anything!
  • Classes are 1 hour long, and will be held from 2 to 3 PM on a Saturday in June. The day of your class will depend on your indicated availability.
  • All classes will take place over Zoom.
  • Teachers will be required to attend a short online orientation session.
  • Check out the Splash Day 2020 catalog for examples of classes. Catalogs from Splash events at other schools (for example MIT and Columbia) can also be great resources.

Stratosphere 2020 Schedule

  • Session 1: June 6th
    • 1 to 2 pm: Infinity
    • 2:10 to 3:10 pm: Japanese: Instant Ramen Edition
    • 3:20 to 4:20 pm: Flattening the Curve: What Does It Mean?
  • Session 2: June 13th
    • 1 to 2 pm: Herps 101
    • 2:10 to 3:10 pm: Better, Faster, Stronger: An Intro to Algorithmic Analysis
    • 3:20 to 4:20 pm: Sparrow's Kitchen
  • Session 3: June 20th
    • 11:00 to 12:00: How to Code in ANY Programming Language!
    • 1 to 2 pm: From the Naturals to the Reals: A Curious Construction
    • 2:10 to 3:10 pm: Introduction to Indian Culture Through Reading Hindi and Sanskrit
    • 3:20 to 4:20 pm: Gene Therapy and Cancer Treatment
  • Session 4: June 26th
    • 1 to 2 pm: Digital Citizenship & Literacy
    • 2:10 to 3:10 pm: The Art of Asking "Why?"
    • 3:20 to 4:20 pm: Chemistry at the Movies

What can I teach?

You can teach a class on pretty much anything you are passionate about. The purpose of the event is to get high school students excited about learning and motivated to learn about new fields, and so one suggestion we make is to teach about something students wouldn't otherwise encounter in high school. That being said, the choice is entirely yours, and we will approve all classes provided they aren't inappropriate (see below). Classes taught at Splash programs around the country include:

  • How to Start a Business Before College
  • From Swans to Sparticus: Ballet in the Soviet Union
  • How Laws Work
  • Cryptography and Cryptanalysis

For examples of classes taught at our events, check out our past catalogs. We also encourage checking out catalogs for other Splash programs around the country.

When will I teach?

We are offering classes from 2 to 3 PM EDT on June 6, 13, 20, and 27. Your class will be scheduled on one of these days based on the availability you indicate on your registration. You do not need to be available for all sessions. Each class will only be offered once.

How are classes structured?

Classes will be 1 hour long and will be registered through your teacher account. When you register your class(es), you will be asked to provide a title, description, occupance cap, time preferences, a difficulty rating, pre-requisites (if any), and special requests. You do not need to have all your class materials finalized to register a class. If you have an idea, feel free to register it and you can spend the weeks leading up to the class preparing your class. All classes will be taught over Zoom.

How much time do I need to commit?

You can commit as much time as you want! If you would like to teach for the whole day you can register multiple classes, or teach multiple sections of a single class. If you only have time to teach one class, you can do that too. The teacher registration form will ask for your availability, and we will only schedule classes during the times you indicate.

As for class preperation, you don't have to prepare extensive lecture material. Classes can be as relaxed as an hour-long conversation on 21st century politics, or as structured as a serious lecture. Your class is what you make of it!

Do I need specific qualifications to be a teacher?

As long as you are an undergraduate student, you do not need any special qualifications. All teachers will be required to attend a mandatory teacher orientation session (details to be decided).

Is there anything I cannot teach?

You will have freedom to teach whatever you want. However, we reserve the right to disallow classes if we feel they are inappropriate. Some things we won't allow include classes that promote illegal activities and classes that use hazardous materials (such as weapons).

Who is organizing this event?

This event is being independently organized by several members of the UR Splash team. The organizing members are: Julian Maceren, Katie Karabetsos, Junis Ekmekciu, Sparrow Tian, Mouhamed Diakhate, Tatsuaki Kiohara, Arian Nadjimzadah, and Mandar Juvekar.


If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to contact us.

*This event is not affiliated with the University of Rochester.

Last modified by mjuvekar on May 18, 2020 at 06:22 p.m.