Tapping America's Potential Our Goal: Increase the annual number of U.S. science, technology, engineering and mathematics bachelor's-level graduates to 400,000 degrees by 2015.
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Are We Falling Behind

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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.

March 17, 2016 — Washington Post  — “In a First, Girls Outdo Boys in Prestigious High School Science Competition”
Three of America’s brightest high school scientists, one boy and two girls, emerged as winners last week in the annual Intel Science Talent Search, among the top U.S. competitions for young innovators. Of the 40 finalists for the award, 52 percent were girls, the largest proportion in the program’s 75-year history. “This milestone is an inspiring sign of progress toward closing the gender gap in technology and engineering,” said Rosalind Hudnell, president of the Intel Foundation. (The competition is sponsored by semiconductor maker Intel.) “We hope these finalists’ outstanding work will inspire young people from all backgrounds to develop their interests in these fields.”

March 15, 2016 — TechCrunch  — “Engineers bridge the divide between technology and society”
One of the many reasons women are under-represented in “tech-sector” engineering disciplines such as software, mechanical, electrical, computer and mechatronics engineering is because we’ve done a terrible job conveying how engineers contribute to society in meaningful ways. Many women, as studies have shown, prefer to enter professions where they can have a beneficial impact on people and society. This preference affects the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields in many ways, and partially explains why engineering disciplines, which have obvious societal benefit such as biomedical engineering and environmental engineering, also have the highest female participation rates (40 percent). The tech-sector engineering disciplines, conversely, struggle to sustain a meager 15 percent female participation.

March 11, 2016 — BostInno  — “Why an MIT PhD Says Big-Data Education Is Now 'Fundamentally Important'”
Let’s wander outside our Boston bubble for a moment and direct our attention to Lowell. That’s right, Lowell. It might seem like the last time that city was any kind of beacon of innovation was back in the Industrial Revolution. But there’s actually a startup out there now that’s doing big things with that beloved buzzword: big data.

March 11, 2016 — Education World  — “U.S. Lags Behind Other Countries In Tech Skills U.S. Lags Behind Other Countries In Tech Skills ”
It's been well known for quite some time that the U.S. falls behind other countries when it comes to science and math skills, part of the reason behind the recent accelerated push to support STEM learning. But according to a recent study, U.S. adults also fall behind in something a little more surprising: technology skills.

March 10, 2016 — Chicago Tribune  — “How to strengthen the STEM workforce”
The breadth and the depth of student experiences in STEM courses, labs, and applied learning activities ensures that they move into their careers with the skills necessary to meet a region’s STEM workforce needs. The most effective way to attain this outcome is for colleges and universities to work in collaboration with local businesses, industries, and third-party intermediaries such as chambers of commerce.

February 29, 2016 — U.S. News & World Report  — “The Biggest Hole in STEM Pipeline Starts Before Kindergarten”
It’s a well-established problem that too few blacks and Hispanics, and too few women of all colors, pursue degrees and careers in the sciences. And much research has gone into why minority students aren’t taking as many science classes in high school, and later in college, as their white counterparts do. Wonks call it the “leaky STEM pipeline,” referring to all the students who leave science, technology, engineering and math as they progress through their educational careers.

February 10, 2016 — U.S. News & World Report  — “How U.S. Students Stack Up in Math, Reading and Science”
More than 1 in 4 15-year-olds living in economically developed countries – some 13 million students – do not have a basic level of knowledge in at least one of the three core subjects: math, reading and science. In some countries, the statistic is worse, with more than 1 in 2 students lacking such baseline proficiency. And that poor performance holds ramifications that reach far beyond just a report card.

February 09, 2016 — CNN  — “How this STEM School is Shattering Stereotypes”
At STEM3 Academy, sticking to the norm doesn't work. In fact, the school was launched to do just the opposite. "Our emphasis is on learning versus teaching," said Dr. Ellis Crasnow, the school's director. "Our students learn by doing, experiencing and constructing rather than just sitting in a classroom listening to a teacher."

February 09, 2016 — EdTech Magazine  — “5 Ways Digital Tools Are Transforming the Education Space”
Digital tools are transforming essential elements of the education space. Understanding how they are affecting teaching and learning will help you figure out which tools are useful and how best to implement them.

February 04, 2016 — NPR  — “Making Science Teaching More Than 'A Backup Plan'”
"Squat! Squat! Squat! Higher! Faster!" In the basement of the Duane Physics and Astrophysics building at the University of Colorado Boulder, a science demonstration is going on, but it looks more like a vaudeville act. One by one, students balance precariously on a rotating platform. Then they are handed what looks like a spinning bicycle wheel, holding it by two handles that stick out from either side of what would be the hub of the wheel. When you flip the wheel over, like a pizza, your body starts rotating in the opposite direction.

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