"We are a nation increasingly dependent on technology. Yet, in spite of this dependence, U.S. society is largely ignorant of the history and fundamental nature of the technology that sustains us. The result is a public that is disengaged from the decisions that are helping shape its technological future. In a country founded on democratic principles, this is a dangerous situation."
William A Wulf in Foreword to Standards for Technology Literacy - Content for the Study of Technology . This short paragraph concisely summarizes the threat to a society that uses technology without more than a selfish self-interest or votes without consideration of the choices our politicians make about the life and death use of technology.
Technologies and their evolution influence crucial decisions in large scale arenas such as economics, ethics, politics, health, and environmental protection, while also playing central roles on a smaller scale in our everyday lives.  Communication, entertainment, and navigation rely on increasingly modern technologies that individuals use on a near constant basis.
Consequently, we frequently take for granted technological tools without developing a fundamental literacy of how they work. Young and Pearson note that “even as technology has become increasingly important in our lives, it has receded from view.”  The statement by Wulf also suggests a solution, if “disengaged” is the problem then we must find ways to “engage” our population.
Envisioned as an opportunity to showcase current technologies to students, these sessions aim to provide informative and easily consumable demonstrations. Topics slated to be featured include GPS, iBooks, virtual reality, and other common technologies with which students regularly interact without really thinking about the technological underpinnings. The Office of STEM Education hopes to partner with representatives across campus to host several such showcases each semester.
Standards for technological literacy : content for the study of technology. (2000). Reston,
Va.: International Technology Education Association, c2000.
Young, A. T., & Pearson, G. (2002). Technically speaking : why all Americans need to
know more about technology. Washington, D.C. : National Academy Press, ©2002.