Innovate+Educate + STEMconnector™: Collaborating to Promote #STEM
Submitted by Tommy Cornelis on November 30, 2011
Innovate+Educate is a national nonprofit organization founded in 2009 to provide a bridge between industry and education with states to advance, accelerate and transform STEM education. Innovate+Educate has also been an integral partner of STEMconnector™, spearheading the compilation of the state STEM profiles that will go live today at 2:00PM. Here are a few words from Innovate+Educate President and CEO Jamai Blivin.
Innovate+Educate was founded in 2009 on the belief that the only way to solve ournational need for science, technology, engineering and math competencies (STEM)is through collaboration and alignment of efforts . To that end, STEMconnector™ hasdone just that.In June 2011, Innovate+Educate was asked to partner with STEMconnector™ todevelop “snapshot” profiles for all 50 states for the launch of STEMconnector™ inNovember 2011. I agreed to take on this work for our organization because notonly did I know that Edie Fraser was an amazing connector and visionary, I knewthat with Edie’s leadership, STEMconnector™ was going to be an amazing resource. Ialso believed that it would be a true asset that would provide industry a tool to fordetermining how their investments could be maximized in the states in which theyhave a footprint. In New Mexico (as an example), the NM STEM Network matchedcorporate investments with a 100% match of state dollars to show true industryand public/private partnership. The formal STEM networks that exist in some ofthe more mature STEM states have experts that truly know their state, their STEMportfolio, and their constituents in P-20 and state government.It took six months and a lot of emails and phone calls. But, along with effort, camesuccess. November 30th will launch all 50 State STEM Snapshots and will includekey information on state umbrella efforts working to advance STEM. The results aretruly amazing and every state has something to be proud of. States like Texas, NewYork, North Carolina, Arizona, and California “shine” with industry partnerships.Arkansas highlights their new launch of STEM practices under Governor Beebe’sleadership. Through our research in Oklahoma, the Governor’s office connected usto Ben Robinson advancing STEM in Oklahoma by aligning the aerospace industrywith education across the state. The Oklahoma Aerospace Industry, comprisedof over 400 companies, employs over 140,000 people directly or indirectly andcontributes $12.5 billion to Oklahoma’s economy each year. Ben is a retiredBrigadier General in the US Air Force, with 29 years experience as a pilot and spent6 years with Boeing managing over 300 aerospace engineers. General Ben, aswe like to call him, understands at a personal and professional level the criticalconnection between education and industry and the need for industry to takeleadership in working with education to prepare the workforce of tomorrow.Moving into 2012, Innovate+Educate will focus on working with top industry tomaximize their investment portfolio at the state level. STEMconnector™ will beour resource and handbook to guide industry investments. And, because of EdieFraser’s vision and her incredible team’s efforts--states, industry, organizationsand government now have a one-stop resource for working together to build aglobally competitive STEM nation. We all know the famous quote “it will take avillage”…. Well, Edie and her team just built that village.I congratulate everyone at STEMconnector™ on their extraordinary effort and lookforward to the launch of this ground-breaking database on Wednesday."-Jamai Blivin, President and CEO of Innovate+ Educate