In Florida, the Northeast Florida Regional STEM2 Hub’s focus is on accelerating the growth of STEM education and careers. Hub Start-up Executive Director, Wanyonyi Kendrick, brings her perspective as a former CIO to these efforts.
The Northeast Florida Regional STEM2 Hub’s first education initiatives include bringing code.org curriculum to every school in its region and ensuring STEM after-school clubs are funded at a similar level to sports clubs. The hub wants to ensure Northeast Florida teachers receive stipends and professional development for leading STEM clubs.
“Computer science puts students on the path toward some of the highest paying, fastest growing jobs in America,” said Kendrick. “However, roughly 90 percent of schools do not teach it. STEM2 wants to be part of changing this and so many other similar anomalies that prevent our students competing for the STEM jobs of tomorrow. STEM2’s partnership with STEMx will ensure we effectively mobilize national best practices to accelerate STEM education and careers in our region.”
“As the chair of STEM2, I am personally very committed to a world class education system that prepares our students for the opportunities our global economy will present them,” said Gary Chartrand, chair of the Northeast Florida Regional STEM2 Hub’s board of directors. “The pace of change has challenged us to think differently about the way we educate and prepare our students for success. Partnering with STEMx will allow us to embrace those best practice changes already established in the STEMx network.”
STEM2‘s governing board is make up of 20 regional businesses. STEM2 is currently seeking applications from Northeast Florida businesses to become founding donors. Interested business can contact STEM2 (http://www.stem2hub.org/contact-page/). Northeast Florida Regional STEM2 Hub’s website is: http://www.stem2hub.org/
Maryland’s push for STEM is coordinated by the Maryland State Department of Education. STEM initiatives there are led by Cindy Hasselbring, who served 16 years as a mathematics teacher before moving into state policy.
As a state, Maryland has made progress on a number of areas, especially in bringing STEM to young students. An elementary STEM certification program is now in place along with a statewide strategic plan for STEM.
“Maryland is committed to providing our students with a quality STEM education that prepares and inspires them to meet the challenges of a global society through innovation, collaboration, and creative problem solving,” said Cindy Hasselbring, Special Assistant to the State Superintendent. “Joining STEMx supports this goal by providing us access to resources, best practices, and a cadre of STEM leaders from around the country.”
The full STEMx network counts more than 20 states and territories. Through STEMx, organizations trade solutions to common problems, plan collective action and lay the groundwork for the next generation of innovators.
Sign up for information on free STEMx webinars, events, and other opportunities here. The STEMx network is managed by Battelle Education, a venture of Battelle.