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STEMconnector to Host 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM TownHall (10/22, 2-3PM ET)

    
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100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM TownHall
Wednesday, October 22 | 2-3PM EDT
 
STEMconnector® will host an online TownHall on Wednesday, October 22nd from 2:00-3:00PM ET, featuring keynote presentations from honorees in the 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM publication. Participants will speak about their vision for a more competitive nation, their own journey, and their advice on how to get more women and minorities into STEM education and careers.

Released on September 23rd100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM follows up on the success of 100 CEO Leaders in STEM (2013) and 100 Women Leaders in STEM (2012). As with previous books, we continue to reflect on the growing importance of women and diversity in this edition. Our hope is to empower not only the influencers of students making a career decision, but also corporations looking to cultivate leaders. To download the publication, click here. Follow the conversation on social media using #100STEMLeaders.

STEMconnector® is grateful to the sponsors that made this publication possible: UST GlobalSodexoSilicon Valley Education FoundationApollo Education GroupCiscoNorthwestern MutualTata Consultancy Services and Walmart

A list of confirmed speakers and their bios follows:

 

 
Kimberly Foster Price
Vice President, 3Mgives
3M
 
Kimberly Foster Price leads the development and implementation of 3M's global strategic philanthropy and community engagement, including oversight of the 3M Foundation. Price earned her Juris Doctor from Columbia University School of Law, her Master's degree in Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University and her Bachelor's degree from Bowdoin College.
 
 
Ray Dempsey
Vice President & Head of External Affairs; President, BP Foundation
BP America
 
Ray Dempsey, Jr. has held a variety of management and operational roles in engineering, environmental, strategy, finance, and external affairs in the US and abroad since joining the company in 1990. Dempsey holds a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering from Kansas State University and a Master's degree in Business Administration from Northwestern University.
 
Theresa Hennesy
Senior Vice President and Group Technical Advisor for Engineering and Platform Services (EPS)
Comcast Cable
 
Theresa Hennesy is responsible for leading the EPS organization in its continuing mission of improving the customer experience, sustaining rapid growth economically, driving innovation everywhere, and maximizing efficiencies. In addition, Theresa leads Comcast's Sourcing Management & Governance (SM&G) function, leveraging best practices and defined policies, and ensuring predictability and delivery from sourcing vendors. Theresa lives in the Philadelphia area with her husband. She is originally from the Washington Metro Area and studied at George Mason University. 
 
Larry Quinlan
Global Chief Information Officer
Deloitte
 
Larry Quinlan is a principal at Deloitte-one of the world's largest professional services organizations. He serves as the Global Chief Information Officer and chairs the Global CIO Council. As CIO, Larry has responsibility for all facets of technology including strategy, applications, infrastructure, support, and execution. In this role, he also leads the worldwide technology organization. Larry has been with Deloitte since 1988 and has served in a variety of leadership roles, including Global CIO for Deloitte Consulting LLP and National Managing Principal for Process Excellence. Larry holds an MBA from Baruch College, City University of New York and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of the West Indies.
 
Dexter Cole
Vice President of Programming, Science Channel
Discovery Communications
 
In his current role for the Science Channel, Dexter oversees the programming strategy for the network and is responsible for identifying new programming genres to grow the network's audience. Dexter returned to Discovery in 2010 after a two-year term as Vice President of Research for TV One, where he was responsible for leading the network in the areas of programming and consumer research. He received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Howard University in Washington, D.C., with a Bachelor of Arts, Magna Cum Laude, in Journalism and an MBA.
 
Sanjay Verma
Divisional Vice President, Global Serivces
PTC
 
Sanjay Verma's responsibilities include worldwide operations, strategic planning and global initiatives. Before moving to PTC, he was the Founder and Managing Director of ITC Infotech India Ltd., a software services and solutions provider with offices in India, USA, and UK. He is a contributor to Celebrity Series of Boston in the roles of a Board Member and a member of the Executive Committee. Sanjay is a Charter Member of TiE Boston.  In this role, he mentors early stage technology ventures to achieve their potential.
 
Dawne Hickton
Vice Chair, President and Chief Executive Officer
RTI International Metals
 
Dawne S. Hickton has more than 25 years of diversified metals experience, including more than fifteen years in the titanium industry spanning several business cycles. Since becoming Chief Executive in 2007, Ms. Hickton has led a strategic transformation of RTI to become a leading vertically integrated global supplier of advanced titanium and specialty metals products and services for the commercial aerospace, defense, energy and medical device markets. She is also the Chair and a Director of the Board of Directors of the Pittsburgh branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and a Member of the Board of Governors of the Aerospace Industries Association.
 
Michael Norris
Chief Operating Officer, North America
Market President, Corporate Services Market
Sodexo
 
Michael Norris has an extensive background in driving sales growth and increasing market share and currently oversees Sodexo's B&I portfolio that has annual revenues of more than $1.4 billion and serves more than 1,800 client locations nationwide. Honorably discharged from the U.S. Army in 1973, Mr. Norris attended Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, MI and earned a Masters in Business Administration in 1995 from the University of East London, London, UK.  
 
Sajan Pillai
Chief Executive Officer
UST Global
 
Sajan Pillai is UST Global's Chief Executive Officer and a member of its Board of Directors. As CEO, Sajan is responsible for the company's growth and acquisitions. He leads the company's global business operations through its state-of-the-art centers in the United States, the United Kingdom, India, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Mexico. With an extensive background in the offshore IT industry, having served as co-founder of Softek Systems in India as well as an engineer in one of India’s top three consulting services companies, Sajan remains poised to lead UST Global into the future of IT. Sajan also architected and managed several large software systems for MCI Telecommunications in the United States and subsequently held senior management positions in Tanning Systems, a US-based software solutions company. Sajan graduated with a degree in computer science and engineering from the College of Engineering, Trivandrum, India.
 
Miguel Quiroga
Executive Director of Customer Experience, Video/Broadband Division 
Verizon
 
Miguel Quiroga is responsible for establishing and leading the business integration strategy and execution of cross channel customer engagement efforts for both contact center and digital channels including TV, online, mobile, social, and voice. Miguel was previously Director of Employee Experience and Customer Business Intelligence. Miguel holds an MBA from Columbia University and a BS in Computer Science from The University of Texas at Dallas.

 

100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM - Avis Braggs of ConocoPhillips

The 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM blog series features a new business executive Monday-Friday and the exemplary work his or her company is doing to support 21st century STEM learning and workforce development- particularly for women, minorities and under-represented groups. Learn more and download the whole copy at STEMConnector.org/100Diverse. Follow the conversation on social media using #100STEMLeaders. Today's Diverse Corporate Leader is Avis Braggs, manager, Information Technology (IT) at ConocoPhillips.

Avis Braggs, Conoco

Avis Braggs
Manager, Information Technology
ConocoPhillips

Avis Braggs is manager, Information Technology (IT) and is a member of the IT leadership team and the senior manager leadership forum for ConocoPhillips. From 2005 to early 2008, she was chief information officer and vice president for DCP Midstream, a ConocoPhillips joint venture in Denver, Colo. Prior to that, she managed IT for U.S. Marketing. From 2001-2004, Braggs had functional responsibility in Global Procurement Services for Downstream and Upstream Americas’ businesses.

Braggs has long championed diversity in the workplace. She and a team established the first five diversity networks for ConocoPhillips’ Bartlesville location, including the Black Employee Network, Hispanic Network and Women’s Network.  As co-founder, Braggs helped source leadership, secure sponsorships and establish charters for each group. Braggs also actively mentors African American employees across the company – many of whom connect with her through the employee networks. She furthers this investment in people by regularly sponsoring employees for select professional development opportunities via her involvement with the Executive Leadership Council. Born in Trinidad, Braggs moved to the United States after completing high school. She has a bachelor’s degree with dual majors in accounting and business administration.

About ConocoPhillips

As one of the world’s largest independent exploration and production companies, we are proud to support the well-being of the communities in which we operate – through charitable giving, volunteerism and civic leadership. Our global giving is focused primarily on education, health and safety and natural resources. A key area of our social investment strategy is education. We believe an educated workforce drives our global economic future. Through our social investments, we strive to improve skills and advance research in secondary and technical education; support diversity of the talent pool in math, science and engineering disciplines; and improve the effectiveness of primary education. ConocoPhillips works with a number of partners globally in the promotion of STEM subjects to school children. These partnerships are critical to ensuring our ability to equip our future workforce with the skills necessary to meet the world’s growing energy demands.

Avis on Diversity and STEM

What STEM initiative that your company has supported are you most proud of?

In April of this year, our IT organization conducted an Innovation Challenge where we selected 16 students from nine universities across the country to compete in a two-day event at ConocoPhillips’ offices in Bartlesville. The students were able to select from four emerging IT technologies. Four teams were given a real business problem and one day to solve it using their assigned technology. At the end, each team delivered a presentation describing their solution. An employee-mentor supported each team throughout the process. Employees also served as judges and awarded monetary prizes to each of the teams based on creativity, complexity and presentation. Although most of the students had no previous experience with their assigned technology, the participants immersed themselves in their subjects. Feedback on the event from both students and employees was overwhelmingly positive.

Leaders are in great demand as business builders and role models. What advice do you have for minorities and women coming “up” in the system?

One, build a portfolio of excellent performance. While it’s not the only thing needed, it will be key to opening the door to future opportunities. It also sets you up as a valuable asset and gives you leverage. Two, nurture your relationships with decision-makers in your organization. In addition to excelling at assignments, you will need visible, vocal support from leaders who are willing to stand up on your behalf, especially when you are competing for assignments. Three, take on roles that you may not want, and excel at them. This demonstrates resilience, versatility and a mature outlook on career progression. Most people can perform well in assignments they like. Over a career, there will always be roles that aren't exactly what you want to do. Prove that you can make the best of these and learn as much as you can. And finally, continually balance your life's priorities. This is important to your well-being as a person. Take time to enjoy your family, friends and time away from work.

Are you a mentor and what is your view of mentorship?

Mentorship is a key vehicle for gaining access to unfiltered feedback, guidance and support. I also believe being a mentor is an obligation leaders have. Mentoring others increases our ability to expand the impact of the experience we’ve gained, and it extends the value of the investments that have been made in our professional growth. While I serve as a mentor for several employees, I believe I have the most impact when I know the employees’ abilities and aspirations, I’m familiar with the organizations they’re trying to navigate, and there is a mutual trust. This relationship must provide safety for brutally honest conversations, where an employee can reveal mistakes they’ve made and the mentor can share with the employee when they may have made errors in judgment. I encourage employees to consider a mentor who has a very different working or personality style, as they can provide a perspective that is not obvious.

What Employee Resource Groups does your company have in place? How can we can we do a better job to strategically coordinate all those engaged in STEM across companies and cross different departments?

ConocoPhillips supports a variety of employee networks that focus primarily on professional development, networking, community involvement and supporting ConocoPhillips' recruiting activities. The groups represent a variety of constituencies – numerous ethnic groups, new hires, women, administrative assistants, parents and even patriots. Each of these groups has an executive sponsor who provides them visibility and guidance. Leaders of these networks meet periodically to coordinate their activities, share learnings and leverage resources. The groups provide valuable communities of support for their membership, leadership opportunities and relationship-building across work areas that would not have otherwise existed.

Report: Food And Ag Industries, Educational Institutions Need New Talent To Meet Demand In STEM Fields

Emerging Careers Enable Millennials to Address Global Food Security Challenge

DES MOINES, Iowa (October 16, 2014) | A new report released today identifies a growing gap between the supply of new graduates trained in agriculture-related STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields and the demand for young professionals in related roles by global food and agriculture employers. The report recommends that the food and agriculture industries work closely with educational institutions on closing the employment gap necessary to sustainably feed an expected global population of nine billion people by 2050.
 
The report, released today at the World Food Prize 2014 Borlaug Dialogue, includes a detailed analysis of university enrollment and workforce trends in six agriculture fields: agricultural business and management, agriculture mechanization and engineering, animal sciences, plant and soil science, food science and technology and other life sciences. 
 
 
The STEM Food & Ag Council, a project of STEMconnector®, found substantial career opportunities in the food and agriculture industries for the next generation of young people and calls on Millennials to
pursue STEM education. Key findings from the report include:
  • From January to August 2014, the food and agriculture industries hired nearly 34,000 people per month.
  • A quarter of current food and agriculture professionals are age 55 or older, meaning that workforce attrition will create additional opportunities for young professionals to advance in their careers. 
  • A 4.9 percent aggregate growth in STEM employment opportunities in advanced agriculture fields is projected over the next five years, adding 33,100 new positions.

Commenting on the findings in the new report, Iowa Lieutenant Governor and STEM Food & Ag Council Chair Kim Reynolds said, “We live in a knowledge-based, global economy, and it is critical that our students be prepared for the jobs and opportunities of the 21st century, and that the food and agriculture sector can meet its growing demand for young professionals.”
 
“Meeting the ever-increasing global demand for food will require a whole new generation of scientists, innovators and entrepreneurs,” said Paul Schickler, DuPont Pioneer president and STEM Food & Ag Council vice chair. “The opportunities are growing, but we must apply new solutions to fill these critical jobs in the long term.”
 
Five young professionals in the food and agriculture industries were profiled in this year's report. “Agriculture is increasingly global and information-based, which is as exciting at the farm gate as it is in international agribusiness,” said Andrew Lauver, the 24-year-old Frank Ross International Emerging Leader at DuPont Pioneer. “There are so many opportunities for people my age to make a real impact and travel the world as a part of the solution to global hunger and poverty.”
 
The report includes recommendations on closing the human capital gap and provides an annual snapshot of the workforce supply and demand for each of the identified programs. 
 
Resources 
 
About The STEM Food & Ag Council
The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Food & Ag Council is a unique public-private partnership dedicated to engaging the next generation in careers in the food and agricultural workforce. The Council has the bold vision of developing the requisite human capital that will drive the innovation to feed 9 billion people by 2050. Following the completion of its first year of existence, the STEM Food & Ag Council releases a report on nationwide agriculture workforce, business, and education trends. The STEM Food & Ag Council’s members include professionals from ADM, Dow AgroSciences, DuPont Pioneer, Iowa State University, Monsanto, the National 4-H Council, National FFA Organization, and PepsiCo. Council activities are facilitated by STEMconnector®, an organization dedicated to engaging diverse stakeholders to improve outcomes in education and raise awareness about STEM careers.

Bayer Donates $100,000 To Help New Jersey Students Pursue Science Careers

This is a press release from Bayer USA

U.S. Sen. Cory Booker and NASA Astronaut Mae Jemison Join Bayer and Newark Eighth Graders in Hands-on Science Experiments at Students 2 Science 

WHIPPANY, N.J., October 15, 2014 | Bayer Corporation today presented a $100,000 two-year grant from the Bayer USA Foundation to Students 2 Science (S2S), Inc., an innovative STEM education organization that introduces elementary, middle and high school students from Northern and Central New Jersey to real-world science and scientists at its professional laboratory in East Hanover and through its virtual lab program.
 
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Dr. Mae C. Jemison, Bayer’s national Making Science Make Sense® spokesperson, were on hand as Philip Blake, President of Bayer Corporation, presented the donation to Dr. Paul A. Winslow, President and Co-Founder, S2S.  Sen. Booker, Dr. Jemison and Mr. Blake then joined eighth graders from Newark’s Link Community Charter School as they donned lab coats and safety glasses to perform four challenging experiments focused on the periodic table.
 
The new Bayer grant will underwrite all visits by middle and high school students to S2S’s laboratory and its virtual labs during the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years.  In 2014-2015, with 86 planned school visits, Bayer will sponsor more than 3,000 students and some 4,000 the following year when 100 school visits are scheduled. Together with the virtual labs, Bayer will reach more than 10,000 students. Nearly two-thirds of these students attend schools in the 31 districts that are part of the New Jersey Schools Development Authority (SDA), formerly known as Abbott districts.
 
During today’s announcement, Bayer called on additional companies located in the Garden State to support Students 2 Science’s mission. 
 
“One year ago, Bayer celebrated the opening of its state-of-art U.S. facilities in Whippany.  Today’s grant to Students 2 Science continues deepening those roots in communities where Bayer’s employees live and work by reaffirming the company’s commitment to improving STEM education and building a more diverse STEM pipeline and workforce,” Mr. Blake said. “Students 2 Science plays an invaluable role in STEM education here and offers STEM companies throughout the region unique volunteer opportunities for their scientists and engineers.  We, at Bayer, urge them to get involved.”  
 
S2S makes science and scientists accessible to students. The organization works to inspire, motivate and educate elementary, middle and high school students about pursuing STEM careers by getting them out of the classroom and into the laboratory where they conduct challenging experiments side-by-side with professional scientists using sophisticated lab instruments.
“Bayer, Students 2 Science and I all know that increased education in science, technology, engineering and math drives innovation in our communities, in our state, and throughout our country,” Sen. Booker said.  “With this grant, Bayer is investing in New Jersey’s future and ensuring that our students have access to quality education in innovative fields that will help grow our economy." 
 
The Making Science Make Sense program is Bayer’s companywide initiative that advances science literacy across the United States through hands-on, inquiry-based science learning, employee volunteerism and a public education campaign led by Dr. Jemison -- astronaut, scientist and educator.   
 
The 2013 Bayer Facts of Science Education survey revealed that only half of the nation’s Fortune 1000 employers were able to find enough qualified two- and four-year STEM degree holders for open, unfilled jobs and very few employers – only 16 percent – said they were seeing what they consider adequate numbers of female, African American, Hispanic and American Indian job candidates who have two- and four-year STEM degrees.
 
“The Students 2 Science Board of Directors and staff are enormously grateful to Bayer for this generous grant that will allow us to serve thousands of students -- many of them from underserved districts -- and achieve our goals over the next two years,” Dr. Winslow said.  “By bringing students into the lab, our aim is to eliminate the intimidation factor, introduce them to the excitement of science and connect them with successful STEM professionals so they can learn firsthand about the benefits of a STEM career.”
 
New Jersey business leaders confirm they cannot find the STEM talent they need to stay competitive, according to Change the Equation’s Vital Signs report.  While Vital Signs credits the state with stretching its math and science education dollars farther than other states do, it says no state has been able to close persistent student achievement gaps among racial and ethnic groups. In 2011, only 9 percent of New Jersey’s African American eighth graders and 12 percent of Hispanic eighth graders scored at or above proficient in science.  
 
At the same time, New Jersey’s K-12 STEM Ed Report Card 2011 projects the state will add roughly 270,000 STEM-related jobs that will need to be filled by 2018.
 
Social Media Users:
 
About Bayer Corporation and Making Science Make Sense®
Bayer Corporation is a subsidiary of Bayer AG, a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials.  As an inventor company, Bayer sets trends in research-intensive areas.  Bayer products and services are designed to benefit people and improve the quality of life.  At the same time, Bayer aims to create value through innovation, growth and high earning power.  Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development and acts as a socially and ethically responsible corporate citizen. In fiscal 2013, Bayer employed 113,200 people at year-end and had sales of €40.2 billion. In North America, Bayer had 2013 net sales of €9,680 million ($12,874 million) and employed 15,200 at year-end. For more information, go to www.bayerus.com.
 
Making Science Make Sense® (MSMS) is Bayer’s company-wide initiative that advances science literacy through hands-on, inquiry-based science education, employee volunteerism and a public education campaign. Currently, 12 Bayer sites around the U.S. operate local MSMS programs, which together represent a national volunteer corps of more than 1,000 employees. For more information, go to www.bayerus.com/msms.
 
About Bayer USA Foundation
The Bayer USA Foundation is an endowed 501(c)(3) entity with a programmatic focus on education and workforce development, and environment and sustainability. The Foundation supports organizations that enhance quality of life, connect diverse groups, ensure preparedness for tomorrow’s leaders, and improve communities in which Bayer employees live and work. The Bayer USA Foundation is one of three Bayer foundations worldwide, including the Bayer Science & Education Foundation and the Bayer Cares Foundation. To learn more, go to bayerus.com/foundation.
 
About Students 2 Science, Inc.
Students 2 Science, Inc, is a 501(c)(3) public charity providing an authentic, state of the art laboratory experience complete with modern instrumentation and professional scientists. Teams of students, working collaboratively with teams of scientific professionals, solve real life problems while being introduced to a wide variety of STEM career opportunities.  For more information, go to www.students2science.org.
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100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM - Ken Bouyer of EY

The 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM blog series features a new business executive Monday-Friday and the exemplary work his or her company is doing to support 21st century STEM learning and workforce development- particularly for women, minorities and under-represented groups. Learn more and download the whole copy at STEMConnector.org/100Diverse. Follow the conversation on social media using #100STEMLeaders. Today's Diverse Corporate Leader is Ken Bouyer, Americas Director, Inclusiveness Recruiting at EY.

Ken Bouyer, EYKen Bouyer
Americas Director, Inclusiveness Recruiting
EY

Ken Bouyer is responsible for developing and implementing the global EY organization’s recruiting strategy to build and attract diverse and inclusive talent pools for member firms in the Americas. Ken frequently serves as an EY and industry group spokesperson on both diversity and recruiting trends at a range of events and with leading media outlets. Prior to his current role, Ken was a Director in the firm’s Advisory Services practice, supporting various global internal audit clients.

Ken is currently the Chair of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ (AICPA) National Commission on Diversity and Inclusion. Additionally, he is a Board Member and the Chair of the Audit Committee for the American Accounting Association. Ken also serves on various university accounting and dean’s advisory boards. He is a lifetime member of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) and the ALPFA (Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting) organization. Ken has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Manhattan College in Riverdale, New York. He is a Certified Internal Auditor and AICPA member, and resides in New Jersey with his wife and their daughter.

About EY

EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insights and quality services we deliver help build trust and confidence in the capital markets and in economies the world over, and we play a critical role in building a better working world for our people, for our clients and for our communities. We base our business on sharp analytical skills, and offer diverse career opportunities to STEM-educated professionals, with degrees in accounting, engineering, finance, mathematics and technology. In addition, EY has a strong commitment to STEM education.  Our Academic Resource Center develops time-critical learning materials for university faculty. Many of our corporate responsibility initiatives aim to strengthen education and build STEM skills. For example, we are a sponsor of Cyberchase, the PBS award-wining series that teaches math and problem-solving. Our professionals bring those lessons to life through the Cyberchase Volunteer Program.

Ken on Diversity and STEM

How do we encourage students to continue their study of STEM subjects, particularly women and underrepresented minorities?

We can encourage minority and women students to continue in STEM-related fields through awareness, role models and experience. We do this first for young children, by making STEM learning fun and enjoyable through the support of Cyberchase on PBS Kids. Cyberchase, the Emmy® award-winning PBS television series, helps build the math and problem-solving skills of children ages 8-11 and was specifically designed to engage girls and minorities. EY professionals bring the Cyberchase concepts to life when they visit after-school programs and lead hands-on learning activities.  We have just committed to supporting CYBERCHASE for another 5 years. In middle and high school, mentors and role models provide additional awareness about the careers and options available in the STEM field. Mentors can be established through organizations, such as Junior Achievement, which uses mentors to help students understand the importance of entrepreneurship, financial literacy, and work readiness. We also try to encourage this population of students to enroll in college and study STEM and business disciplines. We are proud to fund week-long business and accounting summer programs at leading universities, where students live on-campus, meet professors and learn more about STEM majors. We can provide early internships to diverse college students, which provide hands-on experience and learning. This year, at EY, we had more than 275 “Launch interns,” who get hands-on experience in Core Business Services, Tax, Advisory and Assurance, the year or two before their client serving internship.  By investing in the diverse workforce of tomorrow, we help them solidify their decision to stick with STEM and business majors and eventually, launch promising careers.

Are you a mentor and what is your view of mentorship?

I often say that I have the greatest role in the firm. One reason why I say this is because I have the ability to be a mentor and help students and professionals achieve their full potential. Mentoring is a critical part of growing the population of students and professionals interested in STEM disciplines. Personally, I have had many mentors throughout my career and I can honestly say that I would not be in my position without them. Mentorship is important and it’s something that we cultivate at EY through many channels. Externally, our College MAP program matches small groups of EY professionals with groups of high school students. The program curriculum includes monthly workshops, college visits, and tutoring tied to financial skills that will help students succeed in college and make the most of their financial futures in general.

Leaders are in great demand as business builders and role models. What advice do you have for minorities and women coming “up” the system?

I would tell minorities and women who are coming “up” the system to ask questions and seek out mentors through networking.  Strong relationships matter.  Mentors give you advice you may not want to hear and can provide you with an alternative point of view that can help you make better decision.  Ask successful people, how they become successful.  They will share that knowledge and if you keep in touch, they will become your mentor.  For example, at EY, for the past three years, we’ve hosted our EY Unplugged program for diverse Staff 1 when they join the firm. The purpose of this program is to have our African-American and Latino Partners share advice and insight into how to succeed during their first year at the firm. By introducing these foundational building blocks early in one’s career, we can help minorities and women come “up” the system. We continue to mentor and advise our diverse professionals through our support of professional conventions with the National Association of Black Accountants and ALPFA, which is the largest Latino association for business professionals and students. More than 150 EY professionals attend each organization’s national convention and they’ve all found it to be a great place to network and inspire students.

100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM - Maureen Borkowski of Ameren Transmission Company

The 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM blog series features a new business executive Monday-Friday and the exemplary work his or her company is doing to support 21st century STEM learning and workforce development- particularly for women, minorities and under-represented groups. Learn more and download the whole copy at STEMConnector.org/100Diverse. Follow the conversation on social media using #100STEMLeaders. Today's Diverse Corporate Leader is Maureen A. Borkowski, chairman, president, and chief executive officer at Ameren Transmission Company.

Maureen Borkowski, Ameren
Maureen A. Borkowski
Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer
Ameren Transmission Company

Maureen A. Borkowski is chairman, president and chief executive officer of Ameren Transmission Company, a subsidiary of Ameren Corporation dedicated to electric transmission infrastructure investment. In addition to leading the development of new transmission, she is also responsible for the operations, planning, construction and policymaking of Ameren's system of more than 7,500 circuit miles of high-voltage transmission lines in Illinois and Missouri. Borkowski has led Ameren's transmission function since 2005 when she became the first female officer to direct an operational and technical area in the company's history. She has more than 25 years of experience in the utility industry, beginning her career in 1981 as an engineer at Union Electric Company, now Ameren Missouri

Borkowski graduated cum laude from the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering. She was recognized by Diversity Journal as one of its Women Worth Watching. She was named as one of the Most Influential Business Women by the St. Louis Business Journal and a Woman of Distinction by the Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri. She has been involved as a volunteer for various charitable organizations and serves as a great role model for young women interested in pursuing engineering or any technical field. 

About Ameren

Ameren Corporation, a Fortune 500 energy company headquartered in St. Louis, powers the quality of life for 2.4 million customers across 64,000 square miles in Missouri and Illinois. The service territory includes a diverse base of residential, commercial and large industrial customers in both urban and rural areas. Fifty-five percent of Ameren’s 8,500 employees are engineers, technicians and information technology specialists. These employees’ STEM skills are essential in maintaining 10,300 megawatts of net generation capacity, 86,000 electric circuit miles transmission and distribution lines, and 21,000 miles of natural gas transmission and distribution, as well as providing safe, reliable and environmentally-responsible energy to Ameren customers.

Maureen on Diversity and STEM

Why is STEM Education/workforce development critical to the future of our Nation?

Science, Technology, Engineering and Math are increasingly important in an ever-changing world and are critical to the economic health and welfare of our nation. We need people in STEM careers to continue to develop technological expertise and innovation and to meet the many challenges facing the United States today.  Energy infrastructure, health care, environmental sustainability, global manufacturing competitiveness, information technology and cybersecurity, and military defense are all fields that require STEM-educated employees. 

How do we encourage students to continue their study of STEM subjects, particularly women and underrepresented minorities?

Outreach is most effective in grade school and middle school. Teachers and parents need to encourage students to take on STEM courses and build that confidence that comes with learning. In many instances, a STEM education doesn’t just involve learning the subjects; it’s also about developing problem-solving skills, logic and critical thinking – training the mind in a broader sense for careers not only in technical fields, but in any field. Group lab exercises and science projects foster teamwork skills necessary for success in any work environment. And if a student is unsure of the career path to take, beginning coursework in STEM can easily transfer to another field.

How has your corporation coordinated investments in education with future workforce needs?

Ameren and other companies in the St. Louis region are participating in an educational initiative called STEMpact. The mission of STEMpact is to increase the number and diversity of students who are proficient in STEM subjects and ready to explore STEM careers. The STEMpact initiative engages teachers to increase their STEM know-how and to help them pass that knowledge onto students through integrated STEM curriculum.

Personally, I frequently speak with students about STEM education and careers. Recently, Ameren participated in a program with Cor Jesu Academy, a young women’s college-preparatory high school. The students visited our generation and training facilities and shadowed employees to help encourage them to pursue a career in STEM. We also support Teach for America-St. Louis and Project Lead the Way, where Ameren engineers visit local high schools to share their stories about the importance of a STEM education. We’ve collaborated with several community colleges to develop training programs for engineering and other skilled trades. We offer annual scholarships in engineering through St. Louis Community College and the Ameren Diversity in Engineering Scholarship at Missouri University of Science and Technology.

Leaders are in great demand as business builders and role models. What advice do you have for minorities and women coming “up” the system?

I would encourage them to have confidence in themselves to pursue a STEM career. Women and minorities can tend to belittle or diminish their own skills and accomplishments. They may feel they aren’t smart enough take the next step. I encourage them to have confidence and seize the opportunity. Start with the most challenging STEM courses available, even if they’re not thinking of a future in a technical field. Challenge yourself. Having inner confidence and realizing there’s nothing to lose is the best way to find your future.

Dow Announces U.S. Apprenticeship Program

This is a press release from Dow

Pilot Program Will Build STEM Skills to Fuel Manufacturing Job Growth in America

MIDLAND, Mich. - October 06, 2014 (BUSINESS WIRE) | The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) today announced that the Company will launch a U.S. Apprenticeship pilot program at various Dow sites across the nation in 2015. This pilot program supports a major initiative of the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP), a national effort to secure U.S. leadership in emerging technologies, create high-quality manufacturing jobs, and enhance America's global competitiveness.

 
“Skills training in manufacturing is crucial for America’s global competitiveness,” said Andrew N. Liveris, Chairman & CEO, The Dow Chemical Company. “Today, when Americans graduate from high school, there are simply too few options for skills-based continuing education. Apprenticeship programs provide an opportunity for the public and private sectors to partner in a meaningful way and to prepare the next generation of Americans for tomorrow’s high-skilled, high-paying advanced manufacturing careers.”
 
Dow U.S. Apprenticeship Program Supports Advanced Manufacturing Partnership
 
The launch of Dow’s U.S. Apprenticeship Program pilot advances the goals and national workforce development efforts of the AMP Steering Committee 2.0, a renewed, cross-sector, public-private partnership to secure US leadership in emerging technologies that will create middle class job growth in America. As part of AMP 2.0, Dow, Alcoa and Siemens have formed a coalition to build regional apprenticeship models and create an instructional Playbook for other U.S.-based companies seeking to develop apprenticeship programs. In addition to sharing best practices gained from over 40 years of experience offering apprenticeship programs in Europe, Dow joined the coalition in committing to pilot key Playbook concepts at company facilities in America. Dow’s U.S. apprenticeship pilot supports that effort.
 
Within the next five years, through its U.S. Apprenticeship Program, Dow aims to develop a highly skilled technical workforce that will support business growth and advance skill development in Manufacturing and Engineering. Dow’s U.S. Apprenticeship program will offer participants two to four years of world-class training and on-the-job experience in some of the most sought after and highest earning technical specialties in the industry. Through partnerships between Dow and local community colleges, the program will combine classroom training and hands-on learning to build in-depth skills and experience. Upon completion of the program, apprentices will be evaluated for employment opportunities at Dow.
 
Pilot Program Will Launch at Seven Dow Locations in U.S.
 
Dow will pilot its U.S. Apprenticeship Program at five of its manufacturing sites in Texas (Freeport, Bayport, Deer Park, Seadrift and Texas City), as well as at its manufacturing sites in Pittsburg, California and the Chicago area. The company expects to hire approximately 60 apprentices for the pilot program in 2015, training them for roles as Chemical Process Operators, Instrumentation & Equipment Technicians and Analyzer Technicians. Dow’s Apprenticeship program will supplement existing company-sponsored training programs for those technical specialties.
 
“The highly technical nature of today’s manufacturing jobs requires identification of candidates who possess core, foundational skills – as well as the drive and capacity to continuously learn,” said Peter Holicki, Corporate Vice President of Operations, The Dow Chemical Company. “Apprenticeship programs enable companies to select and develop promising individuals who possess the winning combination of the right raw talent and a passion for success. In turn, the participants enable company success.”
 
Apprenticeship Program Helps Close Skills Gap and Fuel a Sustainable Workforce for the Future
 
Fueled by cost advantaged energy and raw materials, Dow and other U.S.-based manufacturers have in recent years announced plans to expand their U.S. operations and create new jobs. A recent IHS Global Insight study estimates the creation of 630,000 new jobs in U.S. manufacturing as a result of the U.S. shale gas boom, with 2800 to 3500 indirect jobs also created due to natural gas and shale exploration. However, one of the greatest challenges facing industry today is a shortage of candidates with the technical skills necessary to qualify for key roles now available in the manufacturing sector. According to the study, today more than 600,000 jobs, most of them technical, are going unfilled despite high U.S. unemployment statistics.
 
“Apprenticeship recruitment for technical roles is a critical component of Dow’s effort to ensure a sustainable supply of skilled workers to fill our talent pipeline as we continue to grow in the U.S.,” said Gregory Freiwald, Chief Human Resources Officer and Executive Vice President, The Dow Chemical Company. “This is about helping to close the skills gap, supporting the sustainability of our operations and the communities in which we operate.”
 
For additional news and information related to Dow’s support for advanced manufacturing and ideas for a global economy, visit the Manufacturing Matters web site at: www.dow.com/advanced-manufacturing.
 
For information about the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, visit: manufacturing.gov/amp.html.
 
About Dow
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company is driving innovations that extract value from the intersection of chemical, physical and biological sciences to help address many of the world's most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, clean energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow's integrated, market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 180 countries and in high growth sectors such as packaging, electronics, water, coatings and agriculture. In 2013, Dow had annual sales of more than $57 billion and employed approximately 53,000 people worldwide. The Company's more than 6,000 products are manufactured at 201 sites in 36 countries across the globe. References to "Dow" or the "Company" mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com.
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Pearson’s WISC®-V on Q-interactive® Features Enhanced Content, Flexibility to Provide Critical Insights into Children’s Cognitive Abilities

The following is a press release from Pearson.
 
 
School and clinical psychologists utilize cognitive assessments as a critical tool in gathering information about a child’s learning ability, strengths and weaknesses, and determining a personalized learning plan for students in need of remediation. Now those critical insights can be collected and delivered digitally with the latest version of the leading cognitive assessment for school-aged children, the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children® – Fifth Edition (WISC–V), which is now available on Q-interactive®, Pearson’s intuitive digital assessment management system.
 
The WISC is the most powerful cognitive ability measure for children ages 6:0-16:11. The fifth edition is redesigned with a variety of improvements, and for the first time is available in both digital and traditional paper-and-pencil formats. The digital format of the WISC-V is on Q-interactive, which enables clinicians to easily select, administer, score and report on their clients’ assessments from a tablet.
 
“Digital administration of core psychological tests on the Q-interactive system has been a fantastic development to my practice,” said Patrick Aleknavicius, Psy.D., L.P., clinical psychologist. “Q-interactive allows me to provide more efficient and effective assessment with a streamlined interface, and real-time subtest scoring. The combination of Q-interactive’s flexibility, and the updated WISC-V will allow for a more integrated and detailed understanding of a child’s test scores, and more targeted interventions.”     
 
Clinicians using the WISC-V will benefit from enhanced content including access to new subtest content, as well as increased coverage of cognitive processes important to specific learning disability (SLD) identification and intervention. Additionally, the WISC–V enables more integration with achievement measures including links to the Kaufman Test of Educational Achievement, Third Edition (KTEATM-3) and Wechsler Individual Achievement Test®-Third Edition (WIAT-III) tests.
 
“The new WISC-V provides more critical insights into cognitive ability and integration to achievement results than ever before,” said Abigail Batty, Pearson’s vice president of cognition and neurobehavior. “Additionally, the fifth edition makes assessment and interpretation more effective and efficient for clinicians — and makes the assessment more engaging for students — through the introduction of digital administration and scoring capabilities with Q-interactive.”
 
To learn more about the WISC-V, please visit wiscv.com.
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Schoology Releases Native Mobile Annotations and Improved Grading Workflows

The following is a press release from Schoology.

A new update to Schoology’s iOS mobile application streamlines instructor grading and workflows with the ability to annotate assignments right within the Schoology app. Now instructors can easily give feedback to students and write comments without using third-party add-ins. Schoology’s app update also includes an entirely new grading workflow allowing instructors to toggle between student submissions with a simple gesture: swiping left or right.

Most web and mobile versions of learning management systems (LMS) use third-party external applications to annotate, which slows the user down and risks losing data. “The ability to provide rich feedback and annotate without leaving Schoology is critical for educators,” said Jeremy Friedman, Schoology co-founder and CEO. “We are excited to provide instructors with unparalleled support for providing meaningful, interactive feedback using the devices of their choice.”

Additional new Schoology mobile capabilities include:

View and grade submitted assignments in nearly 200 different file formats
  • Rubric-based grading
  • Create and view annotations with free hand draw, sticky note, text highlight, text underline and more
  • Easy, single-point access to all student submitted files
  • Easy toggle between courses, sections, assignments, students and revisions
  • Gestures such as swiping left and right
  • Audio or video comments
“We have used every efficiency of the mobile environment to make mobile annotations and feedback in Schoology the easiest, most time-efficient and most powerful annotation functionality of any LMS today,” added Friedman.
 
Today, 7 million users around the world use Schoology’s unified platform with tools for instruction and curriculum management, dedicated mobile apps, access to an integrated global learning community, advanced analytics and reporting, and an open platform for third-parties to build on top of the Schoology learning management system.
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Pearson Announces Upgrades, Based on Educator Feedback, to Award-Winning, Tablet-Based Reading Intervention Program

The following is a press release from Pearson Education.
 
 
NEW YORK, NY -- At Pennsylvania’s York City Schools, students learning with iLit, Pearson’s tablet-based reading intervention program for grades 4-10, are more engaged and realizing great gains in developing literacy skills. Today the world’s leading learning company announced upgrades to the program, based on feedback from educators around the country, that will make it an even more powerful tool for helping struggling learners accelerate the development of reading skills.
 
iLit is designed to meet the national crisis of students who simply cannot read at the appropriate grade level and who, by the time they reach high school, are dropping out, checking out or acting out. iLit is the first complete instructional solution built and delivered on tablets that offers students personalized learning support based on their own instructional needs with engaging interactivities, and built-in reward systems that motivate and track progress.
 
With the new enhancements, the intervention program is now device-agnostic and can be delivered on any iOS, Android, Windows 8 or web browser, making it perfect for use in “BYOD” classrooms. New daily phonics assignments and an improved teacher dashboard were added to improve the overall learning experience.
 
As assistant principal at York’s William Penn High School, Sue Long Moyer regularly observed classes. During the first-year ninth graders at the school were learning with iLit, she observed positive changes in a teenage boy that illustrate the power of technology to transform learning and, ultimately, lives.
 
Moyer, a member of Pearson’s Advisory Board for iLit, recalled, “We had a teenage boy who was struggling behaviorally during his math class. He was being extremely disruptive, not paying at attention and was not engaged in the lesson as he was trying to get the teacher to send him out of class.”
 
Later that day, Moyer said she observed the same student in a classroom where he was learning with iLit and he was quietly reading on task and engaged in the activity on his tablet. Curious about this, she asked him why his behavior and attitude had changed.
 
She said, “He told me, ‘I get this. I can read about Tupac and that interests me.’ But, best of all he was spot on, retaining the information and able to apply it to his own life as he explained to me. It was amazing to see him in that kind of setting.”
 
A few weeks later, she observed him in science class, where he was working in a small group and showing his classmates how to go back in the text to find an answer to a question, which is a skill he learned in iLit. “The transfer of knowledge was incredible,” she said.
 
Moyer was so impressed with the results she saw with iLit at the high school level that she introduced it to her English Language Learner students in her new role as principal at York’s Jackson K-8 School. Commenting on the upgrades, she said, “Our students are finding that the examples help them grasp the vocabulary words easier. The words, definitions and pictures are more relevant and applicable, our students grasp them more quickly and, by the end of class, use them in a sentence correctly.”
 
Moyer also said that her students like the immediate feedback from the improved data dashboard because they can see their own growth and they find that motivating. In addition, the dashboard has sparked student-teacher conversations about progress. For example, when a student takes a dip in progress, teachers have conversations about what happened -- discovering if the student is dealing with something outside of school or feels a need for more time to practice.
 
Moyer, who hopes to grow the use of iLit at Jackson K-8 School, said, “Students are growing at rapid rates and engagement is through the roof. I had a whole grade move three grade levels in reading in one year. They just love the program.”
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