The New Jersey STEM Pathways Network (NJ SPN), initiated by the NJ Office of the Secretary of Higher Education in 2014, has launched a new initiative to strengthen Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and spur greater collaboration among education, community and business stakeholders. The programs will cultivate up to four local STEM Learning Ecosystems in the form of free comprehensive technical assistance.
The goal of the program, which NJBIA helped develop, is to support models of education that create an integrated plan to change the way many New Jersey institutions deliver STEM education so we can engage more students and prevent them from falling behind in math and science. Effective education practices and innovative models will be shared across settings in order to be replicated and to solve entrenched STEM learning challenges.
Successful communities will cultivate a STEM Learning Ecosystem, have a shared vision and assess the strengths as well as gaps of their efforts. Educators, whether K-12 teachers, after-school staff, or experts in informal STEM institutions, will have to work across settings to increase their individual efficacy, while at the same time deepening understanding and respect of the role of educators in other settings.
The application deadline is 5:00 p.m. ET Friday, September 9th. The selected communities will be announced Thursday, September 29, 2016.
All of the background information and application can be found here: http://www.state.nj.us/highereducation/njstem/
For technical assistance, contact Angie Kastning at firstname.lastname@example.org and register for the Monday, August 1 webinar, from 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. EST, which will walk through of the application process and answer any questions: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6352603627922935553
Meeting the demands of an innovation ecosystem requires the state to continue to focus on STEM education, even as it touts its highly educated workforce. While New Jersey boasts more scientists and engineers per square mile than any other state in the country, the state is working to improve its pipeline of STEM-prepared talent to sustain and grow its innovation economy.
By creating these opportunities, businesses and educators can ensure that students at all levels are learning the types of portable STEM skills needed in an environment where tasks and job categories are continually changing a central part of our innovation and workforce initiatives at NJBIA.