Showing 10 posts tagged stem
The US House of Representatives passed a controversial bill this morning that would grant 55,000 new visas to foreigners who graduate from US universities with science, technology, engineering or math degrees (so-called STEM graduates). The vote comes just two days after the Obama administration said it was opposed to the bill.
The bill, called the STEM Jobs Act, passed on a 245-139 vote mostly along party lines, with about two dozen Democrats joining Republicans in supporting the bill, according to a report from the blog The Hill. Most Democrats opposed the bill, though, because the STEM Jobs Act adds the 55,000 new visas at the cost of a diversity-visa program that grants the same number of visas to countries with historically low levels of immigration to the US.
» via ars technica
Hundreds of prominent women working in science, technology, engineering and math will become online mentors for college students next month, part of a six-week program to encourage young women to pursue careers in STEM fields.
“I think of this as a MOOC — a massive open online course — and a big mentor-fest,” said Maria Klawe, the president of Harvey Mudd College and a sponsor of the project. “Getting more women into STEM is my passion in life, and every institution that’s set up mentorship programs for young women has been successful at increasing their numbers, so I think this can make a real difference.”
The program has no curriculum, no exam, no grades and no credit — just a goal of connecting young students with accomplished women working in STEM fields. Prominent universities — including the California Institute of Technology, Cornell, the Georgia Institute of Technology, Harvard, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton, Stanford and the University of California, Berkeley — have been quick to sign on, contributing mentors and publicizing the program to students.
» via The New York Times (Subscription may be required for some content)
In order to ensure great STEM teachers stick around and top-notch students put teaching on their short list of career options, today the White House announced plans to create an elite STEM Master Teacher Corps, a nationwide community of outstanding public school teachers that are effective with their students and can serve as models and inspiration.
The initiative will launch this year with 50 teachers selected locally in 50 sites and will expand over the next four years to 10,000 teachers across the nation. Each “master teacher” would be expected to serve in the corps for a minimum of four years and would lead professional development and school turnaround efforts in their schools and districts, develop lesson plans and strategies to transform the practice of their peers, and mentor new educators so that they’re more likely to stay in the classroom.
» via GOOD
100Kin10 is a collaboration led by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and Opportunity Equation with the goal of training 100,000 high-quality STEM teachers over the next decade. Google hosted the first-ever gathering of partners—including museums, nonprofits, tech companies, school districts, and universities—Tuesday at their Washington D.C. offices, and more than 100 shared their plans for tackling the teacher shortage.
The plans include improved efforts at everything from recruiting and hiring to training and retaining the next generation of STEM teachers. The 23-campus California State University system, for example, committed to to preparing 1,500 new math and science teachers every year through 2015. CSU administrators also plan to ensure that half of those teachers fill jobs in high-need schools and stay on the job for at least three years. Google is working to develop a recognition program that will turn the spotlight on the accomplishments of the top 5 percent of STEM teachers nationwide.
» via GOOD
With black unemployment reaching historic levels, banks laying off tens of thousands and law school graduates waiting tables, why aren’t more African-Americans looking toward science, technology, engineering and math — the still-hiring careers known as STEM?
The answer turns out to be a complex equation of self-doubt, stereotypes, discouragement and economics — and sometimes just wrong perceptions of what math and science are all about.
The percentage of African-Americans earning STEM degrees has fallen during the last decade. It may seem far-fetched for an undereducated black population to aspire to become chemists or computer scientists, but the door is wide open, colleges say, and the shortfall has created opportunities for those who choose this path.
» via MSNBC
With two-thirds of all undergraduate degrees and 60 percent of master’s degrees now going to women, many believe it’s only a matter of time before that trend influences the upper echelons of the STEM fields.
Already, statistics from the Council of Graduate Schools show that women, overall, earned slightly more than half of the doctorates handed out in all disciplines in the United States in 2009 and 2010. When it comes to the STEM fields, women have been most successful in medicine and biology — and least successful in engineering, math and computer science.
But experts hope that, too, will change. A recent report from the American Association of University Women notes that, 30 years ago, the ratio of seventh- and eighth-grade boys who scored more than 700 on the SAT math exam, compared with girls, was 13 to 1. Now it’s 3 to 1.
» via Yahoo! News
The survey found that 68 percent of STEM majors say one of their major motivating factors is financial. That makes sense—STEM graduates have higher starting salaries than their peers. The same number say they are attracted to science and math fields because they are “intellectually stimulating and challenging.” But salary is the top factor for male students and intellectual stimulation is the top factor for female students.
Furthermore, 49 percent of female STEM majors said they chose their field “to make a difference”, compared to a relatively paltry 34 percent of male students. It’s particularly interesting given that three teen girls swept the Google Science Fair this year, with the judges commending the young women’s “intellectual curiosity, their tenaciousness, and their ambition to use science to find solutions to big problems.”
» via GOOD