You might have heard the term STEM mentioned lately.
The acronym that has educators, businesses and politicians abuzz, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) is considered the cornerstone to our nation’s prosperity. It is an interdisciplinary approach to learning by combining multiple academic subjects and focusing on real-world lessons. It is about students applying science, technology, engineering and mathematics in contexts that make connections between school, community, work and the world around them while moving students forward – creating stronger problem solvers and more creative innovators to lead the global economy.
According to the National Academy of Sciences, innovation, largely derived from advances in science and engineering, is a primary driver of the future economy and creation of jobs. However, the percentage of science and engineering degrees awarded annually peaked in the 1960's. In Central Florida, we actually lag behind. Only 20% of the degrees awarded in Central Florida are in the STEM fields, compared to 30% nationally.
Students are finishing high school without being fully prepared for college. According to The Condition of College & Career Readiness 2013 report, only 19% of Florida’s class of 2013 scored “college-ready” on all four ACT exams. When compared to performance nationally, Florida ranked 41st in math and 48th in science on the 2013 ACT. In an increasingly competitive world, where innovation is the key to a flourishing economy, the need for us to educate ourselves and our children in STEM fields is more pressing than ever.
Orlando Science Center is taking a stand in the efforts to revitalize STEM education in our community. Whether you encounter us here in the facility with your family, with your Scout organization, on a field trip, or even through one of our off-site school programs, our goal is the same – to show people that exploring these critical areas in an informal way can be fun, exciting and even inspiring.
Our hope is that you’ll take the things you discovered as a result of your time with us and use them as a springboard to explore at home and in school too. Our ultimate goal is to create a STEM-centered community that paves the way towards excellence in science, technology, engineering and math.
If future generations don’t receive an adequate STEM education, they won’t have the opportunity for the highest paying jobs, compete in a global market or fill the STEM pipeline that leads to economic growth. We hope you’ll join us on this journey!
23 October 2014
Posted in Community
It's been said that today's youth are tomorrow's leaders. They're also tomorrow's innovators and inventors, and the ones who can help create new opportunities for our local economies to prosper and flourish.
To inspire our local youth to develop new ideas that can change the world, Bright House Networks is proud to present "Bright Ideas STEM from Today’s Youth" — a multi-state competition where high school students show how STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) can bring their idea to life!
Want to get your students' inner geniuses going? We've put together a few ideas and a list of resources that can help you focus your students on using STEM to solve some of today’s challenges.
Whether big or small, your students’ Bright Ideas can change the world!
Download the Bright Ideas Institute Kit to get the tools and instructions you need to participate. This kit includes:
- The Bright Ideas 60-second promotional video
- A list of programming networks with STEM-related content
- Some suggested activities for generating Bright Ideas entries
For more information or to enter the competition, visit www.brighthouse.com/brightideas.