The momentum for improving U.S. STEM capabilities is building, with opinion leaders and editorial boards opining in support of reform and newsrooms writing about it across the country.
August 29, 2016 — Atlantic — “The Quiet Work of a Civil Engineer”
Civil engineering is often called the oldest engineering discipline, as humans have been building roads, bridges, and water ducts for thousands of years. These kinds of infrastructure projects are ones that civil engineers still work on today. The profession is also expected to expand by 8 percent in the next 10 years, as increasing urbanization and an interest in renewable-energy create new projects for civil engineers. Given the makeup of the field, that raises big social questions. Engineering is the STEM sector where the struggle for female representation is the most pronounced: According to statistics compiled by the Society of Women Engineers, only 12 percent of engineers are female. Further, more than half of the female freshman who sign up to major in engineering end up switching to non-STEM majors by graduation. Eileen Velez-Vega is a civil engineer based in Puerto Rico. Velez-Vega has been enthusiastic about aviation and space since a young age, and she’s the first in her family to become an engineer. I spoke with Velez-Vega about her experience as a female engineer, her work in constructing airport runways, the economic situation in Puerto Rico, and how surviving cancer affected her work priorities. The interview that follows has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
July 25, 2016 — Dallas Morning News — “Solar Car Challenge opens doors for young women in STEM”
On Sunday, students from 22 high schools across the nation packed their bags, adjusted their solar panels, and prepared to race cross country in homemade machines for the 2016 Solar Car Challenge. Founded in 1993 by Dr. Lehman Marks, the Solar Car Challenge Foundation aims to get students interested in science by giving them an opportunity to design, construct and race solar powered cars. This year, the students are racing from Texas Motor Speedway in Ft. Worth to Minneapolis. While encouraging kids to get involved in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) from a young age, the Solar Car Challenge also making an effort to bring young girls into the field. In the STEM sector of the job market, women are vastly underrepresented, with only 13 percent in engineering and 25 percent in computer and mathematical sciences.
July 20, 2016 — International Business Times — “Apollo 11 Moon Landing Anniversary: Facts About Lunar Mission 47 Years On”
Even though Yuri Gagarin from what was then the U.S.S.R. became the first man in outer space, the lead he gave the Soviets in the space race in 1961 was overcome by the United States eight years later. On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first men to step on the moon’s surface, a defining moment in human history.
It has been 47 years to the day since three U.S. astronauts (Michael Collins was the third, but he never went to the lunar surface, staying behind in the command ship) went to the moon as part of the Apollo 11 mission. In the three years that followed, 10 more men made the journey as part of NASA’s Apollo missions, but none has been as iconic as Armstrong’s “one small step for man.”
July 20, 2016 — TIME — “7 Essential Moon Landing Stories From the TIME Archives”
The Apollo 11 moon landing took place on July 20, 1969. Here's a look at TIME's best coverage of the mission, from the 1960s through today.
July 20, 2016 — SportTechie — “Oakland A’s Host Little Leaguers To Promote STEM Education”
As STEM education and sports have continued to align together, baseball often times is a perfect bridge to learn about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education. Today, the Oakland A’s and Chevron will host more than 100 Richmond Little Leaguers, for the second year in a row, for an on-field clinic that will look to inspire science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning through the science of sports. The coaches will include A’s coach Ron Washington; former A’s players Shooty Babitt, John Odom, and Bip Roberts; former Major Leaguer Mike Felder; and Babitt’s son Zachary Babitt, a 2012 MLB draft selection.
June 29, 2016 — CH2M — “Dow, CH2M and Smithsonian partner to empower STEM educators”
The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) and CH2M are partnering with the Smithsonian Science Education Center to empower 34 teachers from five states to participate in the 2016 Dow-CH2M Smithsonian Teacher Scholar Program. The six-day program, part of the Smithsonian Science Education Academies for Teachers (SSEATs), will be held in Washington, D.C. and is designed to heighten STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) teachers’ ability to inspire and enlighten their students. Following the program this summer, the teachers will take their experiences back to their classrooms, while continuing their professional growth through peer networking, mentoring and interaction with Dow and CH2M employee volunteers.
June 13, 2016 — Brookings — “Three questions with Jesse Lovejoy, director of STEM education for the San Francisco 49ers”
...“Three Questions” is an occasional series where we ask leaders in technology policy to comment on issues related to their area of expertise. This installment features Jesse Lovejoy, director of STEM education and the 49ers Museum for the San Francisco 49ers. He answered questions about using sports to engage students in science, technology, engineering, and math. Lovejoy joined the San Francisco 49ers in August 2013, when he was brought on to develop and implement educational and community programming for the 49ers STEM Education Program and the 49ers Museum. He led the 49ers into a domain where no NFL team – or any professional sports organization – had ventured before: a comprehensive STEM education program for students in grades K-8. This unique program serves 60,000 students from around the Bay Area and beyond each year.
June 07, 2016 — The Journals — “Report: Students Want Hands-On, Real-World STEM Education”
When it comes to STEM education, high school students in the United States want to see changes made to teaching methods and more access to resources outside of the classroom, according to a national survey conducted by the Amgen Foundation and Change the Equation. The results released in the report “Students on STEM: More Hands-on, Real-World Experiences” show that students want more tangible learning opportunities. Respondents said that common teaching methods, such as teaching from the textbook, are less engaging than hands-on learning methods.
May 30, 2016 — Sport Techi — “Denver Broncos Created A Program Called Tackle STEM To Create The Next Generation Of Smart Front Office Staff”
The Denver Broncos have one of the more active STEM presences of any team in the NFL, apart from the Silicon Valley-based San Francisco 49ers. The reigning Super Bowl champions created a program called Tackle STEM, in conjunction with Arrow Electronics, which aims to cater towards the next generation of students whose interests might lie away from the actual playing field. Just last Thursday, the Broncos hosted students from Montrose High School, a more than five-hour drive away from Sports Authority Field, after their teacher won the February Tackle STEM Coach of the Month award. But, the students did not come to see the Super Bowl trophy or even any of the players on the Broncos’ roster. The pre-engineering students were shown around the backroom of Sports Authority Field, and were introduced to much of the staff behind the scenes.
May 19, 2016 — The White House — “Attention Kid Scientists! – The President Wants Your Ideas on Science and Technology”
At the 6th White House Science Fair in April, President Obama met nine-year-old inventor Jacob Leggette, who, with the help of a 3D printer, has created everything from a bubble-blowing wand to a mini model of the White House.
When he was talking to President Obama, Jacob also made a recommendation: that the President should have a kid science advisor. The President loved the idea, and suggested that we bring together a group of kids to share their thoughts on what they think is important in science, technology, and innovation. Kids know first-hand what’s working inside and outside of their classrooms and how to better engage students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.
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