Can’t find a grant that will fully fund your STEM program? Never fear! While large-scale funding operations may be able to provide bigger grants, they also usually require bigger grant proposals, bigger post-grant reporting and a bigger team of grant writers. Instead, look for help among the people who know your students best — your local community. With a bit of creativity, community involvement and a passion to provide your students with the best STEM program ever, you’ll have your money, materials and mentors in no time.
It’s no secret that the STEM fields are struggling with an incredible gender gap problem. Even though they made up over 57% of the workforce in 2015, women only account for 46% of science professionals, 24% of computer and math professionals, 15% of engineering and architecture professionals and 10% of advanced manufacturing professionals (STEM2.org) — and those numbers aren’t exactly skyrocketing. According to a 2018 National Science Board survey, only 28% of STEM workers are women.
So, why are women so underrepresented in the STEM fields?
Today, reinforced negative stereotypes embedded in culture and society inhibit women from chasing their STEM passions and dreams. Around 80% of girls do not pursue degrees in science and engineering fields (NSB, 2018). To address this shortage and create a better, stronger future, STEM industries need to focus on diversity by promoting women’s participation. Without the participation of women, we have only half the brain power, half the spirit, and ultimately, half the potential.
When you first decide to introduce a new STEM program into your classroom, it can be hard to know where to start. Do you focus on one subject area, or do you bring in multiple areas of interest? How do you know your students are going to be engaged with the new curriculum? How can you bring them to the doorstep of discovery? When we were asked, “How do I introduce STEM to my classroom?” we put our heads together and designed a package that incorporates relevant topics with all the facets of STEM, allowing learners to discover their own interests by participating in hands-on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math activities. We call it Discover STEM LAB.
If you are a recreational drone pilot, how and where you fly is about to change. Whether you’re a hobbyist, educator or anyone else flying without compensation, the FAA is preparing to release a new set of airspace authorization laws in the Summer of 2019, and it’s up to you to make sure you or your flyers continue to pilot legally.