State-by-state STEM education resources

Take advantage of this list of STEM resources

STEMEd_ResizedIn states across the country, STEM education takes top priority. Each state has different resources and advocacy efforts, and we’ve outlined them here for you.

Many resources are state-specific, and others are nationwide advocacy groups that promote STEM education awareness, legislation, and action.

Do you have a favorite education group that isn’t included? Be sure to let us know in the comments.…Read More

South Portland ‘university’ promotes high school STEM education

The transparent gelatinous alginate strands South Portland High School junior Jackeline Zarate and Portland High School junior Bailey Ruesch pulled from a test tube last week at Fairchild Semiconductor were nanotechnology at their fingertips, The Forecaster reports. “I’ve always liked math especially, so I was happy to come,” Ruesch said as she created the compound with Zarate during the three-day, first-ever Semi High Tech University in Maine. Sponsored by the nonprofit Semi Foundation of San Jose, Calif., the intensive course merged fun, practical applications in science, technology, engineering and math with mock job interviews for students who are not always selected just because of outstanding grades…

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Obama budget threatens popular STEM education initiatives

Ayah Idris, 14, spent two weeks of her summer isolating strawberry DNA at a Seattle cancer research center, watching heart cells pulse in a dish and learning about ethical guidelines for animal research, Yahoo! News reports. This type of inspiring dive into the rigors and rewards of a career in science would seem to be a perfect antidote to the national hand-wringing over the slipping state of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in the U.S. In addition to offering the kinds of inquiry-based experiences that have been shown to best promote science learning, programs such as the Summer Fellows bring kids in contact with the latest scientific advances that have yet to be published in textbooks. Now, the funds that bolster these programs are in danger…

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Social media is a must for America’s STEM future

Social media has become an integral and prevalent part of our society, especially within the younger generations.

Over the last several decades, the United States has declined as an economic and educational global leader in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). To regain economic success and global competitiveness in these fields, government at all levels should launch campaigns that raise STEM awareness and increase student engagement. Actively leveraging social media channels is one potential path to drive K-12 excitement in STEM education and jobs through challenges.

According to the American Council for Technology and Industry Advisory Council’s (ACT-IAC) Quadrennial Government Technology Review, only about a third of bachelor’s degrees earned in the U.S. are in a STEM field, compared to more than half of university degrees earned in China and Japan. With the decline in K-12 interest and engagement in these fields, the U.S. may likely continue to fall short on maintaining an adequate pipeline of STEM-educated professionals. But just how troubling is this situation, and what does it mean for the nation and our future?

Jobs in STEM are increasing three times faster than jobs in the rest of the economy and as a result, by 2018, the U.S. faces a projected deficit of 230,000 qualified advanced-degree STEM professionals. To remain competitive, the U.S. needs to close the gap between the knowledge and skills needed in STEM, and the number of available professionals to fill those needs.…Read More

Discovery Education offers free STEM camp

In an effort to bridge the equality gap, as well as give kids and teachers an opportunity for some summer excitement, Discovery Education recently announced that the company is offering its science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) summer camp resources for free.

“We know that too often, unequal access to summer and after-school learning opportunities contribute to disparities in student achievement,” said Cindy Moss, director of global STEM initiatives for Discovery Education. “After-school hours and summer months provide rich opportunities to broaden all students’ exposure to the STEM concepts we know are critical for their success in the classroom today and that are vital to prepare them to compete for the jobs of tomorrow.”

According to Discovery’s website, the STEM Camp is a “dynamic series of standards-aligned curricula available at no cost to schools, districts, non-profit organizations, and parents for use as part of summer camps, after-school STEM programs or wherever support is needed.”…Read More

Launching the future of STEM education

Flying cars may just be the future of science, technology, engineer and mathematics (STEM) education, reports. Students at Pittsburg High School got to be on the leading edge of that trend as PHS, Pittsburg State University, PITSCO Education partnered and collaborated on a study of educational techniques that involved an applied 10-day unit of integrated science, technology and math learning…

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Education, STEM receive boost in federal budget proposal

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) would see a 4.6 percent boost in discretionary funding, to $71.2 billion, under President Obama’s proposed 2014 budget, which focuses on STEM education and emphasizes early education in a proposed partnership with states that would ensure access to high-quality preschools for 4-year-olds.

The budget proposes a “major reorganization effort” that would see ED partner with the National Science Foundation (NSF) and other federal agencies to boost the impact of STEM education investments.

Obama has put forth a recommendation for a $150 million STEM Innovation Networks program, which would create effective strategies to boost and strengthen STEM education, direct $35 million to create a STEM Master Teacher Corps, and allocate $80 million to recruit and train STEM teachers for high-need schools.…Read More

‘STEAM’ education gains momentum in schools

More schools are climbing on board with STEAM education.

For years, educators have been told about the importance of STEM education—for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics—in ensuring the nation’s competitiveness in a global economy.

But now, a new movement seeks to amend that acronym to “STEAM”—with an “A” for the arts.

Leading the charge is the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), which maintains the website…Read More

The future of STEM education may be at risk

It’s not every day that high school students get the chance to meet a renowned physicist. But Arkansas high school students spent Tuesday listening to Dr. James Gates, a noted African-American theoretical physicist, talk about his career and the importance of a STEM education, reports.

“There are half of million jobs that can’t find Americans to hire because they don’t have the skills level,” he told the packed auditorium at Philander Smith College in Little Rock. “These are the jobs you most want to have in the future.”

Who could fill those? More students who focus on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) classes in high school and college. Gates is a professor of physics at the University of Maryland in College Park but also serves on President Barack Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. In that capacity, he advises Obama on myriad topics including the increasing need for STEM education in the United States……Read More

Students’ science proficiency all over the map

Different state standards lead to varying degrees of science preparation.

A series of reports found that K-12 students in many states spend less time learning science and don’t have access to rigorous science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses—and that many states have low benchmarks for eighth-grade science proficiency.

The reports come from Change the Equation (CTEq), a CEO-led effort to improve STEM education launched by the Obama administration as part of its “Educate to Innovate” initiative. They examine student performance, access to educational opportunities, and the amount of instructional support that teachers and schools receive in STEM-related courses.

Included are profiles of each state and recommendations for how it can improve K-12 STEM education. Some of those recommendations address the same issues.…Read More