FIRST STEM Learning Opportunities Vital in Global Community

South Carolina State Superintendent of Education, Jim Rex, celebrates South Carolina’s recent FTC State Championship help at South Carolina State University in an op-ed in Greenwood Today.  He observes:

The need for STEM knowledge and skills reaches beyond robotics competition into all aspects of individual and community life. That’s a key reason the federal government last month began an Educate to Innovate” campaign to enlist leading companies, foundations, non-profits, and science and engineering societies to work with schools across America to promote excellence in science and math.

This campaign aims to:

  • encourage students to take an active interest in math and science education and careers;
  • motivate all students to learn and perform well in math and science courses;
  • provide math and science teachers with professional development opportunities; and
  • support the development of highly qualified teachers in the math and science fields.

” In a special report released last June (The Opportunity Equation), the Carnegie Corporation said America’s capacity to innovate for economic growth and the ability of our workers to thrive in the global economy depend on a broad foundation of math and science learning. All young Americans, the report said, need to be “STEM-capable” no matter where they live, what educational path they pursue, or in which field they choose to work.

Kudos to Mr. Rex for giving FIRST state level recognition and acknowledging the far reaching impact of FIRST to enhance “ individual interests and talents, builds social relationships, and encourage hands-on, innovative activities.

Hopefully more states will sit up and take notice of the innovative programs going on in their communities, led by volunteers and professionals donating their mentoring guidance and expertise to students of all ages, aiding not only the students, but society now and in the future.

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