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Baldwin Wallace University program receives national recognition: Higher Education

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Great Lakes Science Center, in partnership with Cleveland Metropolitan School District's MC2 STEM High School, Cleveland State University and the Ohio STEM Learning Network, has opened the Center for Innovation in STEM Education.

The new center will be a regional training center for a statewide consortium of schools, regional hubs and training centers that focus on science, technology, engineering and math. In its first year it will offer programs to help educators integrate project-based learning into their classrooms.

It is supported by Race to the Top funding through the Ohio STEM Learning Network, which is managed by Battelle Memorial Institute.

source: http://www.cleveland.com/metro/index.ssf/2012/10/baldwin-wallace_university_pro.html


BP funds STEM initiatiive in Trumbull County schools

WARREN — BP is funding a $50,000 initiative to equip teachers in Trumbull County with a web-based STEM-education program.

The program will help 20,000 students in Trumbull County from fourth to 12th grades improve their science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills, said Robert Marino Jr., assistant superintendent at the Trumbull County Educational Service Center. The program uses problem-based learning techniques and multimedia resources.

The donation from BP covers the cost of the licensing software to access the “Defined STEM” program in every classroom in the county and it will also cover the cost of training more than 200 teachers during a two-year period, said Brice Harris, science director for TCESC. 

 

 

source: http://www.vindy.com/news/2012/oct/24/bp-funds-stem-initiatiive-trumbull-county-schools/?nw


Local teacher wins STEM award for second time

LANCASTER — Since her FFA days in high school, Anita Yaple always has wanted to teach — it just took her some time to achieve that goal.

“I wanted to be a (vocational agriculture) teacher. I went to the Ohio State branch in Wooster (ATI), but at the time, nothing I took would transfer to the main campus so I would have had to start all over again,” said Yaple, a seventh- and eighth-grade teacher at St. Mary School in Lancaster. “Well, I was 20, and when you’re in your 20s, you don’t want to start all over again.”

Instead, Yaple worked for years as a landscape designer and grower after majoring in horticulture. However, her thoughts eventually drifted back to teaching and, at the age of 40, she decided to go back to school, this time to fulfill the goal she started in her 20s.

“I did four years at Ohio University and got my teaching degree and I just finished my master’s with Ohio Dominican,” she said.

Now, Yaple has achieved another major accomplishment in her life — she recently was awarded the Governor’s Thomas Edison Award for Excellence in STEM Education for the second time in her six-year teaching career.

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The Ohio Academy of Science initiated the program in cooperation with the office of the governor and the Ohio Department of Education to recognize schools and teachers who stimulate student scientific research and extend science education opportunities beyond traditional classroom activities. The Technology Division of the Ohio Department of Development has supported the program since 1985 via grants to the Ohio Academy of Science.

St. Mary was the only Fairfield County school to receive this honor for the 2011-12 school year and Yaple is one of 356 teachers in the state to be recognized with the award.

“I was pleased. I got it two years ago. I didn’t get it last year, so this year was questionable,” she said. “They want a lot of evidence that you are doing certain things so all year long, I was gathering stuff together.”

To qualify for the Governor’s Award, each school had to conduct a local science fair with 20 or more students, send one or more of these students to one of the Academy’s 15 district science days and involve students in one or more youth science opportunities beyond the classroom, such as State Science Day, visits to museums, mentorship programs and extended field trips.

Yaple, who teaches science as well as health, gym, religion and art, said the science fair is one of the biggest projects she does with her students.

“All the seventh- and eighth-graders participate,” she said. “We work on it from the first day of school and it’s a 20-week project.”

She strives to ensure her students get educational opportunities outside the classroom, such as taking a field trip to Hocking Hills or attending the Women in Science event at Ohio University Lancaster. For the first time this year, she will take the students to Fisher Catholic High School on a regular basis so they can work on projects in the school labs.

Inside the classroom, Yaple said she promotes inquiry-based learning and works in small groups with students who might be struggling to grasp a particular concept in class. She also enjoys bringing in guest speakers to further enhance her students’ educational opportunities; most recently, she invited employees with Diamond Power to come in and speak to the students about electricity.

“Kids, especially those in middle school, think ‘OK, I’m learning this, but why do I need to know this?’ and ‘When am I ever going to use this?’” she said. “If they see professionals who use this type of skill, it may interest them enough to think, ‘Oh yeah, I may want to do that someday.’ It makes a good connection when they can see that relevance.”

 

 

source: http://www.lancastereaglegazette.com/article/20121024/NEWS01/310240002/Local-teacher-wins-STEM-award-second-time?odyssey=tab%7Ctopnews%7Ctext%7CFrontpage


BP sets STEM curriculum

Trumbull County Schools' new curriculum will give students a competitive edge in both their education and their career of choice, BP director of Government and Public Affairs Curtis Thomas said.

BP America announced its investment in the STEM-based Web curriculum in a demonstration Wednesday at the Trumbull County Educational Service Center. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

"It was a great opportunity for BP to explain ... the importance we put on education and how important it is for us to be a part of the fabric of the community,'' Thomas said.

The curriculum involves a state-of-the-art, interactive web-based program that students and teachers can access both at school and home. Students will be able to observe videos and perform activities directly related to a STEM-based field, TCESC Assistant Superintendent Robert Marino said.

An example involving wind turbines was demonstrated during Wednesday's launch. Students were able to observe the positive and negative effects of wind energy on the environment.

Students who are not usually aware of what engineers do, for example, will be able to familiarize themselves with the day-to-day activities of people in that profession, he said.

BP will receive progress reports from TCESC regarding who is accessing the program, what aspects of the program they are utilizing and how often.

The curriculum involves a partnership between BP, TCESC and the Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber and was launched with assistance from the Eastern Ohio P-16 (Partnership for Education) Initiative.

The program is available to 20,000 students in grades 4 through 12 in Trumbull County's public school districts.

"TCS had identified this program as one that they need,'' Jim Houck, senior consultant for Pecchia Communications, said. ''It was something that (BP) wanted to fund."

Another reason BP got involved is because it is interested in training the next generation of workers, including engineers, scientists and geologists, professions which BP is looking to hire with the advancement of the oil and gas industry, Thomas said.

"It's no secret it's an aging work force," he said.

BP's investment of $50,000 provides Trumbull County Schools with licensing to the software for two years, funds training for 200 teachers and helps to defray costs of substitutes while teachers are being trained.

At the end of the two-year subscription, BP and Trumbull County Schools will meet to evaluate the progress the program has made and its effect on students to determine whether the program will be continued.

 

 

source: http://www.tribtoday.com/page/content.detail/id/578309/BP-sets-STEM-curriculum.html?nav=5021


62 OHIO SCHOOLS AND 356 TEACHERS RECEIVE GOVERNOR'S THOMAS EDISON AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE IN STEM EDUCATION

  

The Ohio Academy of Science selected 62 Ohio schools and 356 teachers to receive Governor's Thomas Edison Awards for Excellence in STEM Education for their accomplishments during the 2011-2012 school year. This is a 30% increase over last year’s awardees. Each will receive special Governor's Award certificates. The Technology Division of The Ohio Department of Development funded the program.

 

Twelve schools received the maximum median score of 10 points: Beaumont School, Cleveland Hts.; Bellbrook Middle School, Bellbrook; Bishop Liebold E & W Campuses, Dayton; Carroll High School, Dayton; Heritage Middle School, Westerville; Hicksville High School, Hicksville; Hudson High School, Hudson; Kilbourne Middle School, Worthington; Lehman Catholic High School, Sidney; National Inventor’s Hall of Fame School, Akron; Northwestern High School, West Salem; and Ottawa Hills High School, Toledo.

 

To receive the award, schools had (1) to conduct a local science fair with 20 or more students, (2) qualify one or more of these students for one of the Academy's 15 district science days, (3) have students participate in at least one more youth science opportunity beyond the classroom such as State Science Day, visits to museums, mentorship programs and extended field trips and (4) convince external professionals from STEM business and industry, government and academia employers how and to what extent the school’s program met the Academy’s definition of STEM education.

 

 “These awardee schools are engaged in project-based curricula, the central element of any STEM education program,” said Dr. Lynn E. Elfner, the Academy's CEO.

 

 "Receiving a Governor's Thomas Edison Award for Excellence sends a clear signal that these schools and teachers value student-originated, inquiry-based science and technology education as envisioned for the Next-Generation Science Education Standards being developed nationally,” said Dr. Lynn E. Elfner, the Academy's CEO. "Whole new worlds of opportunities open up to students when they complete research or technological design projects," he continued.

 

The Ohio Academy of Science initiated this educational partnership program in cooperation with The Office of The Governor and The Technology Division of The Ohio Department of Development to recognize schools and teachers who stimulate student scientific and technological research and extend STEM education opportunities beyond traditional classroom activities. The Technology Division of The Ohio Department of Development has supported this program since 1985 by grants to The Ohio Academy of Science.

 

Thirty five professionalsbroadly representing STEM employers from business and industry, government and academiaevaluated the applications in a blind review process:  AEP, Air Force Research Laboratory, Battelle Memorial Institute, Central State University, Chamberlain College of Nursing, Cornell University, DeVry University, Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, eTech Ohio Commission, Heidelberg University, Lake County ESC, Lorain County Community College, National Institutes of Health, Notre Dame College of Ohio, Oberlin College, Ohio Bureau Criminal ID & Investigation, Ohio EPA, Ohio Northern University, Ohio State University, Ohio State University Medical Center, Procter & Gamble Co, State of Ohio, Summa Health System, University of Findlay, US Air Force, US Department of Energy, US Geological Survey, Vehicle Research & Test Center, Yale University and Youngstown State University.

 

See http://www.ohiosci.org/PR2012GovSTEMAwards.pdf for a complete list of winners.

 

 


Chaney STEM gets statewide attention for accomplishments

While the Youngstown City School District still has a way to go before it earns an excellent rating on the state report card, it can revel in the fact that the Chaney Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics School has attracted the attention of the Ohio Academy of Science — after just one year of existence.

The Governor’s Thomas Edison Award for Excellence in STEM education put Cheney in exclusive company. Only 62 schools throughout the state earned the award for accomplishments last school year.

In announcing the recipients, Lynn E. Elfner, the Ohio Academy of Science’s chief executive officer, offered this insight: “Receiving a Governor’s Thomas Edison Award for Excellence sends a clear signal that these schools and teachers value student-originated, inquiry-based science and technology education as envisioned for the next-generation science-education standards being developed nationally.”

Chaney scored nine out of 10 on its application. The participants had to conduct a science fair with at least 20 students, qualify at least one of those students for a Science Academy science day, have students participate in at least one more youth science activity outside of the classroom, such as field trips, and convince outside professionals from STEM business and education that the school’s program met the definition of STEM education.

In other words, the competition for the awards was intense and demanding.

The award is especially sweet for the Youngstown school district because it was just 18 months ago that Chaney was transformed from a traditional high school to a STEM magnet for students in grades 6 through 12 and a visual and performing arts center for the same grades.

Chaney’s rebirth was part of the district’s revitalization plan developed by Superintendent Connie Hathorn, with the help of many others. It shook the system to its core, and generated support and criticism in the community.

Hathorn, who came to Youngstown from Akron, would not let the chatter distract him from his goal of reengineering the schools to meet the needs of students and accomplish specific goals.

But because the district is under state-mandated academic watch, a special distress commission, in conjunction with the superintendent and the board of education, has developed an academic recovery plan.

The updated plan went into effect this year, which means an improvement in the state proficiency test scores should be evident in the 2012-13 school year.

Early College

The Youngstown Early College is the only school in the district that is designated excellent on the state report card. The district is hoping to improve from academic watch to continuous improvement.

The award earned by Chaney STEM is the spark that the district has needed.

So, what kind of brain ticklers are the students taking on?

Consider teacher Cory Rudibaugh’s sophomore engineering class. Students Regina Comer and Jeraile Moreland, both 15, and Takeyla Clayton, 16, designed a machine composed of pulleys, levers and knobs to lift a weight.

The machine could well symbolize the effort being made to lift the weight of academic stagnation in the city school system.

source: http://www.vindy.com/news/2012/oct/04/chaney-stem-gets-statewide-attention-for/

 


Chaney STEM School wins state excellence award

After only one year of operation, the Chaney Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics School earned an award for excellence from the Ohio Academy of Science.

Chaney was one of 62 Ohio schools to earn the Governor’s Thomas Edison Award for Excellence in STEM Education for accomplishments last school year. That was Chaney’s first year as a specialty school for STEM and visual and performing arts for sixth- through 12th-graders.

“This establishes us as a STEM school,” said Principal Diane Rollins.

She credited Pam Lubich, STEM coordinator, and the school staff.

“I have exceptional teachers here,” she said.

Their primary concern is students, the principal said.

Lubich takes it upon herself to seek opportunities for the school and the students, Rollins said.

“It’s a prestigious award,” Lubich said. “It shows all we’ve done through the school-year last year.”

To receive the award, schools had to conduct a science fair with at least 20 students, qualify at least one of those students for a Science Academy science day, have students participate in at least one more youth science activity outside of the classroom, such as field trips, and convince outside professionals from STEM business and education that the school’s program met the definition of STEM education.

“These awardee schools are engaged in project-based curricula, the central element of any STEM education program,” Lynn E. Elfner, the Academy’s CEO, said in a news release. “Receiving a Governor’s Thomas Edison Award for Excellence sends a clear signal that these schools and teachers value student-originated, inquiry-based science and technology education as envisioned for the next-generation science-education standards being developed nationally.”

Chaney scored a nine out of 10 on its application.

Engineering students at all grade levels were engaged in their work Friday morning.

Juniors Brendan Wehby, Dylan Sanchez and Ruzja Streeter, all 16, used Autodesk Inventor to design bird houses in teacher Carrie Sinkele’s class.

First, the students made their birdhouses out of cardboard before moving on to the wooden versions.

“We picked the bird we wanted from birds in Ohio,” Dylan said.

The birdhouse style varies in size and the size of the opening.

In Cory Rudibaugh’s sophomore engineering class, Regina Comer and Jeraile Moreland, both 15, and Takeyla Clayton, 16, designed a machine composed of pulleys, levers and knobs to lift a weight.

Sixth-graders in Sharon Ragan’s class researched a particular invention, documenting how it’s changed over time.

Christopher Fitzgerald, 12, chose eyeglasses since he wears a pair himself.

They’ve been around a long time, he learned.

“Now they can be wearable,” he explained.

People who used to need vision correction used to have to carry the early glasses and hold them up to their eyes, Christopher said.

Rollins, the principal, said the school’s award recognition shows that it has the right leadership in place, from Superintendent Connie Hathorn, to the school administration, Lubich and teachers.

“It’s about collectiveness, collaboration, shared leadership and a family environment,” she said.

 

 

source: http://www.vindy.com/news/2012/sep/30/chaney-stem-school-wins-excellence-award/


Akron Public Schools dedicates new STEM high school while facing $12.2 million budget shortfall

AKRON, Ohio - Akron dedicated its new STEM High School Thursday, the second specialty high school dedicated in the city this week.

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math. 

Freshman Alex Erisey, who began his STEM education four years ago at the middle school, said it's fun.

"We use a lot of what we call 21st century skills," he said, "and we have a different method called problem-based learning and we use lots of new technology."

Dawn Mihailovich is so glad to have her daughter enrolled that she drives her to and from the school from the other side of town.

"It really challenges her and makes her strive for better," she said.

On Tuesday, Akron dedicated its first New Tech High School located at the John R. Buchtel Community Learning Center.

A news release issued by Akron schools describes the New Tech approach as one that "focuses on the integration of three core elements that work to establish a culture that empowers students and teachers, engages students with rigorous project-based learning, and provides a unique technology platform to reinforce a collaborative learning environment."

The new schools are bright spots in a district that must deal with a $12.2 million budget shortfall, even if a 7.9 mill levy passes in November. 

If Issue 61 fails, the deficit could grow to $25 million.

source: http://www.newsnet5.com/dpp/news/local_news/akron_canton_news/Akron-Public-Schools-dedicates-new-STEM-high-school-while-facing-122-million-budget-shortfall

 


UC to study recruiting, retaining women in STEM

A team of University of Cincinnati researchers – including interim President Santa Ono – will use a $3.7 million federal grant to study how to recruit and keep more women in science, technology, engineering and math disciplines (STEM).

The National Science Foundation grant covers five years of study. Researchers will gather and analyze data on female faculty, create a training program for everything from searches to tenure, and try to find “safe zones” that female professors can use.

“We have such a dramatic fall-off from graduate school to the university,” said Melanie Cushion, a medical school professor in internal medicine and co-investigator for the project. “Some women see it as a solitary existence, where they have to make or break it on their own.”

In addition to Ono and Cushion, the team includes psychology professors Rachel Kallen, Steve Howe and Stacie Furst-Holloway, and engineering professor Urmila Ghia

The inclusion of Ono, who became interim president Aug. 21, “really brings to the forefront our intention to transform the culture of this university,” Cushion said.

Ono, whose recent research has focused on inflammation of the eye, maintains a lab at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. He has an active $782,332 grant from the National Institutes of Health to study ocular allergies.

 

 

source: http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20120927/BIZ01/309270106/UC-study-recruiting-retaining-women-STEM


Space shuttle trainer seen as education tool

Local educators hope a space shuttle crew compartment trainer that prepared hundreds of NASA astronauts for launch into space will help inspire students to pursue science, technology, engineering and math careers.

U.S. students lag behind many of their international counterparts in critical science and math skills, and local officials said closing that skills gap is essential to bring more jobs to the region and bolstering national security.

The $1.5 million interactive space shuttle exhibit at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is set to be completed a year from now. The hands-on exhibit will allow people to climb aboard and include a 60-seat theater-like classroom.

“We’re very interested in inspiring and motivating the next generation of scientists and engineers,” said Cynthia J. Henry, an Air Force museum aerospace educator. “It’s something our nation needs overall to increase our technical advantage.”

The problem of too few U.S. students with a science or technology background has consequences for both economic growth and national security, experts said.

“It’s an increasing national issue,” said Lester McFawn, executive director of the nonprofit Wright Brothers Institute and former director of the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson.

“Are there enough scientists and engineers” for those key areas, he asked. “The answer is no.”

U.S. 15-year-olds scored below average in mathematics and ranked average in science in 2009 compared to peers in other industrialized nations, according to a report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

In 2007, the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study found U.S. eight graders placed ninth in mathematics and eleventh in science. The nations that outperformed the U.S. pupils were in Asia and Europe.

“The need for STEM-education people in our country is a huge problem,” said Deborah Gross, executive director of Dayton Defense, a trade group of area defense contractors. “We don’t have enough of them.

“We’re not the leaders in science, technology, education and math anymore,” she said. “And these are issues and problems that result in perhaps, a concern for our national defense because we need enough smart people to keep ahead of the game to protect ourselves.”

National security-related programs typically require U.S. citizenship to obtain a security clearance, she noted.

The Level the Playing Field Institute in Palo Alto, Calif., reported science and engineering degrees accounted for one-third of all U.S.-earned bachelor’s degrees compared to more than half in Japan and China in 2008.

A practical reason stands for more students to learn STEM skills: The region must have a larger skilled workforce to handle more high-tech jobs, Gross said. Wright-Patterson gained about 1,200 direct jobs during the last base realignment and closure process which brought, among other gains, the Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine to the base.

“In hopes of growing that, there’s no way to do (that) if we don’t have the workforce that we need,” she said.

Miami Valley schools have targeted STEM education and pursued partnerships with others to boost the field. Among the players are Wright State University, Sinclair Community College, and the Air Force Research Laboratory, educators said. The Air Force Research Laboratory, for example, works with at least 34 area school districts.

The root causes of lagging STEM achievement is fourfold, said Allison Scott, director of research and evaluation at the Level the Playing Field Institute.

Teachers may not have the credentials to teach STEM; students need to be engaged at a younger age; curriculum may be too narrow; and a lack of access and opportunity to education, she said.

A non-traditional classroom

The Dayton Regional STEM School focuses on hands-on and project-driven learning for sixth graders through high school seniors, said Laurie McFarlin, director of communications and partnerships.

“It’s a huge difference from giving a lecture,” said math teacher Peggy Kelly.

Along with math and sciences, the school offers language classes in Chinese and Spanish in response to what business said they needed for the marketplace, McFarlin said.

The school emphasizes creativity, communication, collaboration, persistence and inquiry, said Gregory Bernhardt, president of the school’s Board of Trustees and a former Wright State dean and professor who helped start the new institution in 2009.

“We took the lead in assembling the partnerships across the Dayton region that put it together,” he said.

The 430 students attend from six counties and 28 school districts. Next year, the STEM school will graduate its first senior class. In a break from tradition, every senior must have had an internship to graduate. Students attend career fairs and “power lunches” with STEM professionals, too, she said.

Chelsea Bradshaw, 17, a senior, wants to be a pediatrician and Ben French, 14, a freshman, hopes to become an engineer like his older brother.

Bradshaw said her rigorous coursework has prepared her for what’s ahead, and left her peers at other public schools envious of what she’s learned.

“Now, when I compare my education to theirs’, they are actually sad that they missed out,” she said. “The curriculum is very challenging and I feel like I can apply stuff I learn in the real world.”

The Level the Playing Field Institute has a goal to increase the number of women and minorities in science and technology-related fields.

“If we activate the hidden workforce, we should be able to see a large growth in people who are interested in entering and working in STEM fields,” Scott said.

Thurgood Marshall High School in Dayton teaches students robotics to computer graphics and many other STEM-related courses, said David Lawrence, Dayton City School District chief of innovation.

“When we look at 21st century education students are being prepared for jobs that don’t exist at this time,” he said. “The goal … was to put them in position to move into some high-paying stable fields where they would be able to earn a living for a lifetime.”

Those lessons are imparted on younger students because the high school acts as a “hub” for three other schools: Westwood, Rosa Parks and World of Wonder, he said.

Fairborn High School has two teachers assigned to teach STEM to more than 200 students through an initiative other schools follow called Project Lead the Way, said Brad Silvus, Fairborn City Schools director of curriculum and instruction.

Located just outside the gates of Wright-Patterson with many students from military families attending the school, “it seemed like a natural fit for us,” he said.

The Defense Department funded budget has the Dayton Regional STEM Center as an outreach initiative to train educators at public, private and parochial schools. The center has trained more than 900 teachers in 90 school districts and 24 counties in southwest and central Ohio since it opened five years ago, said Margy Stevens, executive director.

School districts around the country have contacted the center to learn how to replicate the curriculum, she said.

“They like our model because we served every teacher, every child, every school,” she said. “We’re doing more and more work at the national level even though our primary focus is the Dayton region.”

 

 

source: http://www.springfieldnewssun.com/news/news/space-shuttle-trainer-seen-as-tool-to-close-scienc/nSMzx/


Ohio State Online: Digital courses net rave reviews

A push by Ohio State University to enhance traditional classroom material with digital elements will benefit the general public as well.For example, OSU students — or anyone for that matter — soon will be able to watch short videos on climate change on an iPad and then use an app to manipulate 3-D molecules to see why some are greenhouse gases and others are not.

OSU officials think that more than 90 percent of students own a laptop, smartphone or tablet — with many having all three. “They already have the tools, so why not use them to fully immerse the students in their studies in ways we’ve never done before?” said Michael Hofherr, OSU’s senior director for learning technology.

Ohio State launched a program called Digital First in May to help professors create courses that students can access on their mobile devices. Since then, OSU’s iTunes U subscribers have increased from 1,387 to more than 75,000. The number of downloads has risen from 3,373 to just under 150,000, Hofherr said.

And that’s with only five courses and 24 other features currently on OSU’s area of iTunes U, relatively modest offerings compared with schools that have posted scores of course lectures, presentations, campus speeches and other events, most of them free.

“Because of our size, we’re often slow to turn, like an aircraft carrier, but when we do, you want to get out of the way,” said Richard Pogge, an astronomy professor. “Big things are coming.”

He is one of a dozen faculty members who recently attended a two-day boot camp at Apple’s administrative offices in Chicago. They all will be expected to develop an iTunes U course or iBook this year. Pogge’s material has been popular with students as well as with people around the globe.

He received an average of five stars, the highest rating, for his iTunes “Astronomy 161: Introduction to the Solar System” course.

One person wrote, “I’m already intrigued and motivated enough to buy a telescope for my son and I.” A second said, “Thanks Professor Pogge, keeps my inner-nerd entertained and educated. Makes me wish I went to OSU!”

Senior chemistry lecturer Barbara Pappas is transforming an existing online class, “Chemistry in Society,” for iTunes U. The course is for non-science majors and includes topics such as climate change, nutrition, energy and forensics.

“Chemistry is a difficult and intimidating subject for many,” she said.

To “jazz up” her existing course, she has recorded 45 short videos, most of which feature a single topic such as the periodic table. There also will be videos of the class working through related chemistry or math problems as well as animations and apps that help bring chemistry to life.

It’s more labor-intensive for professors to create audio, video and other digital features for their courses. But the payoff is priceless if students are more passionate about learning, said Wayne Carlson, vice provost for undergraduate studies. He is creating an iBook on the history of computer animation, a topic that he has taught for about 12 years.

“I wish all of the professors were required to put their lecture notes and other materials online,” said Nadya Hagee, a 19-year-old psychology major.

For more information about OSU’s Digital First initiative, go to http://digitalfirst.osu.edu/. For more on OSU’s iTunes U, go to http://itunes.osu.edu/.

source: http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2012/09/03/digital-courses-net-rave-reviews.html

 

 


New STEM Academy opens at Cincinnati State

Cincinnati is home to one of just three new state-sponsored STEM community charter schools in opening in Ohio this fall.

 

The STEM (or Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Academy, a high school, is housed at Cincinnati State, and opened its doors Sept. 4. The other two new community schools are in Cleveland and Dayton, sponsored by local public schools systems and universities.

 

STEM schools are highly focused on developing science and math skills, with a emphasis on project-based learning and partnerships with the local community.

 

The city already has two other STEM schools: Taft STEM Elementary and Hughes STEM High School. Both are part of Cincinnati Public Schools.

 

These state-sponsored schools are non-profit and students don't have to pay tuition to attend. Through the partnership with Cincinnati State, STEM Academy students can take part in dual enrollment, earning college credit at no cost. Students who choose could earn up to an Associate's degree while still in high school.

 

Like most STEM programs in Ohio, the new program one is on a growth path. This year's enrollment was limited to 200 students. Plans are to expand to 800 students in four grades and also offer a full slate of athletics.

 

The STEM Academy is focused on students who haven't fared well in traditional schooling and may have turned to a GED program. or dropped out of school instead, says Beth Hensley, superintendent of The STEM Academy.

 

“The interest shown in this project has been quite encouraging,” Hensley says. “To date we’ve hired an individual with a PhD in biology, two engineers with extensive professional and industry experience, and in many cases individuals with extensive teaching experience as well as significant professional experience."

 

The STEM Academy will be housed in leased space in the engineering wing of the main building on Cincinnati State’s Clifton campus. Students will wear uniforms and work on provided laptops. Meals will be served by the College's culinary program in a cafeteria solely for the high schoolers.

 

source: http://www.soapboxmedia.com/innovationnews/918Cincinnati-State-STEM-Academy.aspx

 

 


Participants give rave reviews to Bay Village STEM Academy: West Shore Chatter

This past summer marked the second year of the Bay STEM Academy, an invitation-only summer program for high-achieving students entering sixth and seventh grades.

The three-week immersion in science, math and technology gave the kids a hands-on experience with a variety of real-life science scenario — from learning about prosthetic devices to devising their own experiments in the teaching labs at Case Western University to working side by side with researchers at the Ohio State University Stone Lab on South Bass Island. The seventh-grade curriculum was entitled “The Body Mechanic;” the sixth grade, “Science Detectives.”

Because there’s no better way to get a feel for the program than to hear it from the kids, I asked Bay Middle School sixth-grader and first-year STEM participant Alex Semancik for his feedback. This is what he had to say.

“This summer at Bay STEM Academy, I had a memorable time. I mean where else do you get to climb a 30-foot pole or go to Put-In-Bay and study at The Ohio State University Stone Research Lab? STEM Academy helped me deeply understand math and science in a fun, hands-on way. Bay STEM Academy is like no other camp; it’s fun and great like other camps, but you get something out of it — you get to know STEM. Bay STEM Academy was well worth three weeks of my summer.”

Next year the program will expand to include incoming eighth-graders. Each subsequent year another grade level will be added.

Bay STEM Academy was developed by Jim McGlamery, principal of Normandy Elementary School, and a core group of personnel from the Bay Village school district after parents and teachers repeatedly requested a more challenging curriculum for advanced students.

It is funded entirely by tuition payments and an endowment fund held and managed by the Cleveland Foundation. Anyone interested in getting involved or wishing to make a tax-deductible contribution to the endowment should contact McGlamery at 440-617-7352.

source: http://blog.cleveland.com/westshoresun/2012/09/participants_give_rave_reviews.html

 

 


Boeing and National Math and Science Initiative Launch AP Program at Fairborn High School

WHAT: Fairborn High School will become the first school district in Ohio to implement the highly-successful Advanced Placement program sponsored by the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) this fall as part of the Initiative for Military Families (IMF).  Key officials from Boeing, which is helping fund the grant, and the National Math and Science Initiative will join state and local leaders as well as representatives from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base for the announcement Sept. 12.

The National Math and Science AP program has been leading improvements in AP achievement around the country for the last four years, nearly tripling the number of students enrolling in AP math, science and English courses and more than doubling qualifying scores on the AP exams in participating states.   Recent College Board data shows schools that have been in the NMSI AP program since 2008 have produced an increase of 140 percent in the number of qualifying scores on math, science and English AP exams, which is four and a half times the national average.

NMSI is expanding its AP Training and Incentive Program (APTIP) to Fairborn as part of its Initiative for Military Families, which brings to college-level courses to high schools serving high concentrations of students from military families. While the IMF focus is on schools near military installations, all the students in participating schools can benefit from the program.

About the National Math + Science Initiative: The National Math + Science Initiative (NMSI) is an agent of change that was launched in 2007 by top leaders in business, education and science to improve student achievement in math and science across the American public school system.  The NMSI mission is to bring best practices to the education sector by replicating proven programs on a national scale that have more than 10 years of proven results. These programs include the Advanced Placement Training and Incentive Program to prepare more high school students to succeed in college level courses, the UTeach program to recruit and train more math and science teachers and the Laying the Foundation program to prepare middle school and high school students to succeed in pre-AP and AP classes.  

NMSI has received major funding support for its ground-breaking national initiatives from Exxon Mobil Corporation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, with additional support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, Texas Instruments and Lockheed Martin Corporation.

Contact:  Chris Bruhn, 817-501-1251, cbruhn@nationalmathandscience.org

source: http://www.nationalmathandscience.org/newsroom/articles/media-advisory-boeing-and-national-math-and-science-initiative-launch-ap-program

 

 


Navy promotes STEM learning at Marion Tech

MARION - The Navy is joining educators to encourage more students to seek STEM degrees.

Vice Admiral James "Phil" Wisecup visited Marion Technical College recently as part of the Navy's 50/50 project. Wisecup talked about the importance of attracting people with degrees in science, technology, engineering or math - STEM - and spoke about advances such as nuclear-powered ships and non-slip surfaces on ships' decks.

"It all comes from STEM," he said. "Somebody thought that all up."

Fifty Navy leaders are visiting 50 cities as part of the 50/50 program. They are talking to corporate executives, civic leaders, government officials, college faculty, students and others.

The visitors talk about the need for STEM-trained workers and how veterans can fill the need because of their military training.

"Studies show that the U.S. doesn't have enough students who are interested in pursuing the science, technology, engineering or math degrees that are so essential to achieving success in the future," said Glenn Sircy of the Navy Office of Community Outreach. "This shortage of STEM-educated students presents our nation with a massive challenge, and a strong American defense requires more graduates with stronger STEM skills."

Wisecup called it national security problem.

He talked about how alternative energies are being used by the Navy, which has progressed from sail to steam to gas turbines and now to nuclear power while searching for other alternatives.

He used the deck of the ship as an example, saying the Navy is constantly trying new ways to make surfaces non-slip despite being out to sea.

"We are problem solvers, and that's what we do," Wisecup said. "These are all problems that must be solved."

Local efforts

There already has been a push locally for students to consider STEM careers. The Ohio State University at Marion has launched an engineering program that enables students to get two years of college completed before transferring to the Columbus campus to continue studies. Ohio State Marion, Marion Technical College and Tri-Rivers Career Center also are partnering together through the Robotics and Automation Manufacturing Technology Center to be built on the Tri-Rivers campus.

Attempts to interest students in STEM subjects starts as young as elementary school through beginning robotics programs. Efforts expand in middle and high school as educators focus on what they say is a need for more STEM-trained workers.

"We have a real shortage," said Tri-Rivers engineering instructor Ritch Ramey, who runs a satellite robotics program at Marion Technical College. "It's like the space race."

Other nations

InformationWeek, referring to the group's report, reported that 4.4 percent of U.S. undergraduates are enrolled in STEM programs. That compares to 33.9 percent of students in Singapore and 31.2 percent in China.

Stanford University reported on a study that found 63 percent of students in China in 2009 entered college through a science track. More than 40 percent of freshmen enrolled in India in 2011 were engineering students.

Ramey said auto manufacturers are short on technicians.

"If you have the right skills you are highly employable," he said.

Ramey said he doesn't believe there's enough of a push to promote the high earnings potential in STEM jobs, some of which may require a few years of schooling past high school, but not a four-year bachelor's degree.

Tri-Rivers Superintendent Chuck Speelman agreed.

"If they understand there are career opportunities and what they are, we can interest them at young ages," he said.

Speelman said schools have to find ways to engage students more in these areas, which typically are seen as difficult and complicated.

"Some kids, you hear they say they are not good at math or science," he said. "When the kids are engaged in their learning they don't complain as much about how hard the work is."

Speelman and Ramey encouraged parents to suggest STEM careers to their children and encourage them to take tougher courses in high school.

 

source: http://www.marionstar.com/article/20120911/NEWS01/209110301

 


Dublin middle school students win FIRST Lego League Global Innovation Challenge
When students from Sells Middle School in Dublin, Ohio head off to high school next year, they'll potentially take something with them—a U.S. patent.
Students from that school and the Shelton Public School District in Connecticut tied for first place in the FIRST Lego League Global Innovation Challenge for their food safety innovations.
Many of them aren't even teenagers yet, but their inventions could cause big changes—the Connecticut team designed a "Smart Sticker" that turns from green to red if a food container isn't properly refrigerated, while the Ohio team created an erasable barcode that disappears if meat is stored at temperatures above 40 degrees.
For their efforts, both teams will receive funding to help them through the patent process and then additional funding to help turn their ideas into a marketable product. The contest is an offshoot of the popular high school FIRST Robotics competition for younger students. Leaders of the program said they decided to help students patent their ideas after the students themselves showed interest.
"They had a problem and decided, we're going to solve this by having a real world product we think is patentable," says Jon Dudas, president of FIRST and former director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. "We should have thought of that ourselves, of course, but on their own, they decided that they didn't want to stop with just a project."
So for the past two years, the challenge has tasked students around the world between the ages of 9 and 16 with innovating in a certain field. This year, it was food safety. Last year, it was transportation safety. Last year's winners designed a steering wheel that detected when a driver was texting while driving—the design got the attention of President Obama and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, according to Dudas.
"Companies have told us that they want to develop these inventions, to give these students a licensing deal and invest their money like they do for any other inventor," Dudas says.
Dean Kamen, the founder of FIRST and inventor of the Segway, says the challenge is a way to help foster culture change in America.
"With sports, they don't start with high school football and basketball—there needs to be a little league, there needs to be t-ball," he says. "Well we've got Jr. FIRST Lego League, we've got the Lego League, the Tech Challenge, all with the trappings of sports that causes younger kids to say 'I want to do that.'"
Like the high school robotics competition, which has the feel of a sporting event, every competition Kamen devises is designed to make students feel celebrated like sports or movie stars, to turn science into sport.
"We have big celebrations, the recognitions, cheerleading, political leaders who invite them to the White House," he says. "You have to do the things that makes sports and entertainment bigger than life" and apply them to science.
Dudas says that even if these students' patents don't work out, they've likely got a bright future ahead of them—maybe a brighter future than LeBron James or Brad Pitt.
"The very best basketball players are making tens of millions of dollars a year, maybe even 100 million," he says. "Well the very best technologists are making billions and billions of dollars."

 

 

source: http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/stem-education/2012/06/21/want-some-venture-capital-money-with-that-middle-school-diploma


Highland robotics teams celebrate successful seasons

 

In a presentation that has become an annual tradition, Highland High School robotics participants showed the Highland Local Schools Board of Education what their robots can do as they recapped their competition season May 21.

 

The VEX team, composed of about 21 participants enrolled in robotics classes at the high school, designed, prototyped, built and programmed their robots to place spheres and barrels in goals of varying heights, according to teacher and adviser Gus Matheou.

 

That group competed at Marion Technical College in Marion in February, where they made it to the final round; and at the Ohio Robotics Educators Regional competition in March at Cuyahoga Community College, where they became the Northeast Ohio Regional Champions for 2012 and qualified for the World Championships.

 

The World Championships were held in Anaheim, Calif., in April and attended by only seven teams from Ohio, said senior Patrick Sours, who has been a part of the team for the past two years. Sixteen students traveled to that contest to compete against more than 500 other teams, according to Matheou.

 

The district’s afterschool FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Team had about 33 participants this year, said Matheou, many the same as in the VEX group. Fifteen students were able to attend the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) National Competition in St. Louis, Mo., in April, he said.

 

The FIRST robot is designed to shoot Nerf basketballs into hoops at varying heights as well as balance on bridges. That “game” was released in January, according to Sours, and the team had six weeks to design, build and test their robot for the tasks.

The team competed in the Pittsburgh Regional Competition in early March and made it to the quarter-final round, said Sours.

 

When they competed at Cleveland State University in the Buckeye Regional Competition later in March, something in the computer station was not working, an error that the competition’s administrators recently admitted was their fault, said Sours.

However, even without a regional win, the team was able to attend the St. Louis competition as a “wild card” entry, where they placed 33rd out of 100 in the Archimedes Division, he added.

 

Overall, robotics’ students needed to raise more than $12,000 to attend both of the world championships, which they did, said Sours.

 

The robotics teams are already fundraising for next year, said Sours, and donations are now being accepted. More information on both teams is available on their website at www.highlandrobotics.com.

 

 

source: http://www.akron.com/akron-ohio-education-news.asp?aID=16111


Austintown school district to add STEM courses

 

The Austintown School District is joining the push for more Science, Technology, Engineering and Math-based learning.

 

The district will begin offering STEM courses to students in sixth and seventh grades during the 2012-13 school year, said Janet Polish, director of 21st-century learning.

 

She said the program is through Project Lead the Way and is a partnership with the Mahoning County Educational Services Center.

 

Polish said the sixth-grade course will be an elective that Austintown students can take if they choose.

 

The seventh-grade course will be a self-contained class of 25 students chosen based on an interview process.

 

Polish said any student in Mahoning County can apply for a spot in the seventh-grade program.

 

“We want to start prepping kids with this material,” Polish said. “There are a lot of students who we feel would thrive in an environment like this.”

 

She said students from other districts chosen for the program would attend class at Austintown Middle School but still be considered a student of their home school, so state test scores won’t be affected.

 

Polish said the long-term goal is eventually to bring a STEM academy into Austintown Fitch High School.

 

“We want every kid exposed to this,” she said. “A lot of kids are bored in school because they’re not challenged enough, but this will change that.”

 

She said STEM programs are becoming integral parts of curriculum for universities and local school districts across Ohio.

 

“This is something companies are looking for,” she said. “They wants kids coming out of school, high school, with these skills and ready to work.”

 

Polish said the seventh-grade teacher is hired and paid for by the MCESC, and the Austintown district will be responsible for the sixth-grade teacher.

 

She said the cost to the district for the sixth-grade course will be about $60,000 and includes the teacher’s salary, a two-week mandatory training course and about 60 computers.

 

“There is a lot of money out there for STEM initiatives, so we’re looking at writing some grants,” she said.

 

To apply, or for more information, visit www.austintown.k12.oh.us/STEM, or contact Polish at 330-797-3900, ext. 1512.

 

source: http://www.vindy.com/news/2012/may/30/austintown-school-district-to-add-stem-c/


Hoover High School Receives Project Lead The Way Certification for STEM Education Program

North Canton, OH –Hoover High School announced today that it has received national certification for its Project Lead The Way (PLTW) biomedical sciences program that has been offered since 2008. This is the second time the school has gone through the national certification process to validate its program. PLTW, a nonprofit organization and the nation’s leading provider of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education programs, offers a rigorous world-class curriculum that allows students to apply what they are learning in math and science class to real-life engineering and technology projects. PLTW also prides itself on high-quality professional development of its teachers and an engaged network of business, community and university partners to give students the fullest experience.

The national PLTW recognition program distinguishes schools for successfully demonstrating a commitment to PLTW’s national standards. Additionally, certification as a PLTW school provides students with the opportunity to apply for college credit or receive college-level recognition at PLTW affiliate universities when they successfully complete select PLTW courses in high school. PLTW has more than 40 affiliate college and university partners.

In order to remain competitive in the global economy, America needs approximately 400,000 STEM college graduates annually, according to a National Business Roundtable report. Currently, the U.S. is graduating only 265,000 annually. PLTW is providing students with the skills, foundation, and proven path to college and career success in STEM areas to increase the number of STEM graduates.

Mr. Tony Pallija, principal of Hoover High School said, “We’ve seen how the PLTW program draws more students to biomedical and engineering courses and gets them thinking about college and their careers. We are extremely proud to be PLTW certified and ecstatic that our students are eligible for college-level recognition, which may include college credit for select PLTW courses, scholarships and admissions preference.”

As part of the recognition process, Pallija and a team composed of teachers, staff, students, and members of the community submitted a self-assessment of the school’s implementation of PLTW’s Biomedical Sciences program. A site visit by a PLTW trained team followed. PLTW’s team met with teachers, school administrators, counselors, students, and members of the school’s Partnership Team. A PLTW school’s Partnership Team (sometimes referred to as an Advisory Council) is comprised of teachers, counselors, administrators, post-secondary representatives, business and industry professionals, and other community members who actively support the PLTW program within a school.

“Hoover High School should be congratulated for demonstrating once again its commitment to PLTW’s quality standards,” said PLTW President and CEO Vince Bertram. “The real winners here, however, are Hoover High School’s students. Students benefit from PLTW’s innovative, project-based curriculum that encourages creativity, problem solving, and critical thinking. We look forward to many more years of working together to prepare Hoover High School’s students to become the most innovative and productive in the world.”

Biomedical Sciences teacher, Ben Janchar added, “The beauty of PLTW courses is that our kids get to experience how a concept they learned in science applies to real-world projects in the medical field. Rather than sit passively and listen to a lecture, kids are building, developing, and creating. It’s the kind of hands-on experience that will engage more students in science, technology, engineering and math—fields that they might otherwise never have considered.”

 

source: http://www.ohio.com/upublish/school-and-education/hoover-high-school-receives-project-lead-the-way-certification-for-stem-education-program-1.304846


 

Ohio STEM Learning Network Receives Grant from Walmart Foundation

 

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Building on a strong foundation of public-private partnership, the Ohio STEM Learning Network (OSLN) today announced it has received a $50,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation for the continued growth of the OSLN. The grant will support overall operations of the network and facilitate the launch of new schools in rural Ohio including an academy focused on biosciences.

 

At the OSLN’s flagship Metro Early College High School in Columbus, David Gose, Walmart’s Regional General Manager for Southern Ohio, and Erik Hingst, Walmart’s Senior Manager for Public Affairs and Government Relations in Ohio, joined Battelle Vice President for Education & STEM Learning Eric Fingerhut for the official announcement. Also attending was Battelle’s Director of STEM Innovation Networks, David Burns.

 

"We are proud to welcome Walmart to the OSLN family," Fingerhut said. "The Ohio STEM Learning Network was launched in 2008 as an unprecedented partnership between the public and private sectors. It is fitting to include Walmart, a business deeply committed to promoting STEM education in Ohio and around the country, as a partner in the network’s continued growth.”

 

“Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are proud to support the Ohio STEM Learning Network’s efforts to continue fostering academic success in Ohio. We are also proud to support the expansion of the Network that will bring this advance curriculum to more Ohio’s students,” Gose said. “Walmart proudly supports Ohio’s agriculture industry and we are grateful for the opportunity to support educational programs that will work to develop the future of Ohio’s agriculture industry.”

 

Metro opened its doors in the fall of 2006. The school’s pioneering approach to learning has since served as a model for STEM schools in Ohio and the United States. On average, 82 percent of Metro graduates earn college credit while in high school and every Metro graduate has been accepted to college. Metro is supported by and works closely with Battelle and the Ohio State University. 

 

source: http://www.battelle.org/spotlight/5-17-12_walmart.aspx


Choose Ohio First Scholarship

 

Columbus, Ohio – Franklin University, one of the leading educators of working adults, is pleased to announce it has been selected to participate in the Choose Ohio First Scholarship Program, providing additional financial access to educational opportunities for students in the University’s Management Information Sciences and Computer Science majors. 

The Choose Ohio First Scholarship Program is designed to significantly strengthen Ohio’s competitiveness within Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Medicine (STEM) disciplines and STEM education. Choose Ohio First funds higher education and business collaborations that will have the most impact on Ohio’s position in world markets such as aerospace, medicine, computer technology and alternative energy. These collaborations will ultimately produce substantive improvements to the pipeline of STEM graduates and STEM educators in Ohio.

A new scholarship opportunity for Franklin students, this scholarship is funded in partnership between the Ohio Board of Regents (OBR) and Franklin University.

As a participant in the scholarship program, Franklin University students have access to an additional $2500 to $6200 in financial support per academic year, additional advising and mentoring opportunities, the opportunity to participate in special programs sponsored by OBR for Choose Ohio First scholars, as well as various networking opportunities.

Undergraduate students in Franklin’s Management Information Sciences and Computer Science majors must meet the following requirements to participate in this merit-based program:

Must be an Ohio resident (current resident or graduate of an Ohio high school)

(Preference) Be a  first generation to attend college

Must maintain an overall 3.0 G.P.A., with a G.P.A. of at least 3.0 in major courses

Complete an application detailing why the student chose a STEM major, the student’s strengths in this major, estimated graduation date, and future career goals, as well as how this scholarship will contribute to the student’s education.

The applicant must submit or have on file at Franklin transcripts from previous academic work, including college and high school transcripts. 

For more information about Franklin University’s Choose Ohio First scholarship, visit:http://www.franklin.edu/financial-aid/scholarships/

source: http://www.franklin.edu/news-community/news-events/press-releases/choose-ohio-first


DAYTON — The Dayton STEM Hub awarded more than $285,000 in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education initiative grants to 10 groups to fund innovative STEM-focused education programs for students across the region Funding was awarded to Bishop Liebold Elementary School, $14,062; Chaminade Julienne Catholic High School, $35,000; Dayton Public Schools, $34,440; Greenville City Schools, $34,967; Huber Heights City Schools, $30,933; Innovator Robotics, Inc., $18,620; Milton-Union Exempted Village School, $35,000; Oakwood City Schools, $17,784; Tri-Village Local Schools, $33,600; and Yellow Springs Schools, $33,977.


 

Ohio STEM Learning Network Receives $12 Million Investment

Columbus, OH (PRWEB) February 7, 2008 -- An unprecedented public-private partnership designed to train and connect more than 100,000 students to jobs in Ohio's 21st century economy today announced a $12 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The investment--part of a $50 million commitment by state and private partners--will support the launch of the Ohio Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Learning Network, to be managed by Battelle, the world's largest non-profit independent research and development organization (http://www.battelle.org). The network will begin with five regional STEM-based schools targeting low income and minority students. Ohio lawmakers also have targeted $100 million for STEM college scholarships.

Governor Ted Strickland, Ohio Senate President Bill Harris and Ohio House Speaker Jon Husted gathered at Metro High School in Columbus with Battelle CEO Carl Kohrt, students, educators, public officials as well as business and community leaders to celebrate the unique partnerships that have been formed to nurture and grow Ohio's talent to compete and succeed in college and the workplace. The Ohio STEM Learning Network (OSLN), to be led by Rich Rosen, Battelle's Vice President for Education and Philanthropy, will work with Ohio's public schools to ensure that all students meet the STEM literacy challenge and are prepared to fill the high-quality jobs that will transform Ohio's economy from an industrial economy to a "solutions" economy.

 

"Today's businesses will succeed based on how well we solve problems like climate change, energy independence, high health care costs, and others. STEM literacy, with its emphasis on real-world problem-solving, gives students the intellectual as well as the technical foundation they need to make sense of the world around them and move ahead in this environment." Kohrt said. "Improving education is one of Battelle's founding purposes (http://www.battelle.org) and operational signatures. As a business based on scientific discovery and application, we have a keen interest in vigorously promoting STEM education. This is what Ohio owes its children and it's what we must do to meet the Governor's commitment to open the doors of our colleges and adult career centers to an additional 230,000 Ohioans over the next decade."

 

The OSLN, in cooperation with the Ohio Partnership for Continued Learning, seeks to: double the number of college graduates in Ohio by 2015 with degrees in the STEM disciplines, with a special emphasis on increasing the number of low income and minority graduates; dramatically increase the number of individuals who choose a career in STEM fields to support Ohio's economic growth and ensure the state's position as a leader in innovation, research, and emerging technology; and design and implement a statewide infrastructure that ensures all secondary STEM school creation is aligned with Ohio's education reform, economic development, workforce, and two- and four-year higher education endeavors.

 

Governor Strickland, President Harris and Speaker Husted made the following joint statement: "We can all agree that creating jobs and building our economy are essential and vital to our progress as a state. To do so, we must prepare our students with the skills and tools needed to compete in the ever-changing global marketplace - an environment where talents in the STEM disciplines will drive the economy and dictate success. With Ohio's focus on STEM education we are laying the groundwork for a highly competitive 21st century "solutions" revolution. We look forward to working with Battelle, the Ohio Business Roundtable, the Ohio Business Alliance for Higher Education and the Economy and the Ohio STEM Learning Network partners across the state on this bold initiative that will benefit Ohioans for years to come."

 

AEP Chief Executive and Ohio Business Roundtable Chairman Michael Morris, one of many Ohio business leaders who have supported the development of OSLN and the state's STEM learning initiatives, remarked, "Ohio's greatest challenge is to cultivate and nurture the next generation of knowledge workers to fuel our innovation economy. The Roundtable is proud to join hands with Carl Kohrt and Battelle, our business, philanthropic and education partners, and Ohio's elected leaders to ensure that STEM learning 'sticks' - that it thrives and becomes part of Ohio's permanent education landscape."

 

Metro High School in Columbus, a STEM school and the site of today's announcement, opened its doors in the fall of 2006. According to Ronny Oppong, a sophomore at Metro, every day of school is a 'WOW' moment for him. "My curriculum is challenging with lots of advanced math and science. I'm discovering and inventing, but I'm also given opportunities to apply new ideas to problems in the real world," Oppong said. "Learning is 'hands-on' and personal. And it's not just math and science - there's a lot of history, writing and literature, as well as music and the arts. If it were my decision, STEM would be part of every school."

 

OSLN's goal is to support schools' efforts to inspire, train and connect more than 100,000 Ohio students over the next 10 years to the high-quality jobs that will define the state's success in the global economy. "Our shared mission is to graduate all students ready for college, career and life," said Steve Seleznow, Program Director of Education at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "We are excited about the network of STEM schools that Ohio is creating and applaud the statewide commitment to link a challenging curriculum to the future vitality and prosperity of the state's regional economies."