New Funding Awarded to Educators Bringing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) to Life for Washington Students

Sep 21, 2011, 12:00 ET from Washington STEM

Washington STEM announces its second round of Entrepreneur Awards with 11 investments across the state

SEATTLE, Sept. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- To better prepare Washington students with the education they need for the jobs of tomorrow, Washington STEM is providing micro-investments to 11 innovative educators across the state in its second round of Entrepreneur Award investments. The winning proposals, which total more than $100,000, are from across the state and speak to the community-driven solutions needed to accelerate student success in STEM.

A growing number of jobs at all levels—not just engineers or scientists—require knowledge in STEM. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than one million jobs will require specialized technology skills within the next seven years. This rings true in Washington state where the technology industry is the largest employer of any major sector. Yet too few students are receiving the robust and inspiring STEM education needed to take advantage of opportunities in today's science and technology-rich economy.

"Washington teachers, principals, and education leaders are deeply creative and resourceful," says Carolyn Landel, chief program officer at Washington STEM. "Despite the challenges our schools face, especially in these tough economic times, there are innovative leaders out there pioneering ways to do more with less for our kids. The Entrepreneur Awards celebrate and give voice to this inventive spirit in Washington education."

Entrepreneur Award winners will generate new approaches that have the potential for far-reaching benefits for communities across Washington. Awarded to those who are pioneering breakthrough approaches in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics teaching and learning, these one-year investments provide the incentive to take risks, pilot new ideas, and generate promising practices that can be shared statewide to deepen student STEM literacy.

Projects include efforts using student-generated videos to improve math teaching practices, and building new partnerships with business and industry leaders to bring STEM to life for students. Insights, promising practices, and even STEM curricula will be highlighted on Washington STEM's blog, where grantees are chronicling their experiences throughout the year.

"As educators, it is our responsibility to ignite each and every student's passion for math, science, and technology early and throughout their education," says Mary Moore, a 3rd grade teacher at the Lewis and Clark Elementary School in Richland, Washington and a recipient of Washington STEM's Entrepreneur Awards. "We must make these subjects accessible and engaging to empower our kids with the strong STEM foundation needed for success."

These Entrepreneur Awards are Washington STEM's second round of investments since its launch this past March. Washington STEM was founded to discover and scale innovative approaches for improving STEM education—particularly for students who have been historically underserved. In addition to investing in promising practices, Washington STEM is mobilizing education, business, and community leaders to advocate for effective policies and practices that improve STEM learning outcomes, create pathways for student success in STEM careers, and prepare all students to succeed in today's knowledge-rich society.

A complete list of Washington STEM's round two Entrepreneur Award investments can be found online at http://www.washingtonstem.org/investments.asp

Teachers, principals, district leaders, and educators in non-school settings are encouraged to apply for the next round of Entrepreneur Award investments. More information and requests for proposals are posted at http://washingtonstem.org/grants-center.asp

About Washington STEM
Washington STEM is a nonprofit education organization that aims to discover and scale innovative approaches for improving STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education—particularly for students who have been historically underserved. The organization was founded with the mission to mobilize new partnerships to advocate for and implement practices and policies that improve STEM learning outcomes, create pathways for student success in STEM careers, and prepare all students to succeed in today's knowledge-rich society. Learn more at www.washingtonstem.org or join the conversation at Facebook.

SOURCE Washington STEM



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