STEM Education and Workforce Development
STEM East looks to provide for the current regional workforce void, expand economic growth and improve our workforce development programs by looking deeper into our education and employee training process. Students must be inspired and engaged before they enter high school courses that determine their eligibility for colleges or universities. STEM East looks to influence students before they become disillusioned with education and fail to see the benefit of the course work or dropout all together. Reaching students early and exposing them to the opportunities in the region is the first step to developing a robust workforce pool that will have sustainability and growth potential for industries. Corporations produce projection reports that indicate future industrial workforce needs. Many times over this data is projecting on years that will be directly tied to current middle school and high school students. STEM East will collaborate with industry and economic leaders to provide an educational system that will adjust to reflect projected workforce needs.
STEM East is developing networks with industries, organizations and educational institutions to improve student-learning pathways that will lead to employment.
Through the collaboration of multiple businesses, education districts, economic development municipalities and foundations, state government departments, and many others STEM lab students engage in real-world learning modules that directly align with career opportunities in Eastern North Carolina. Students learn subject curriculum in a collaborative environment that is outcome-based and student-centered. Industry partners work with teachers and students to ensure that the curriculum represents actual workplace functions. STEM lab teachers become more like facilitators as the students become leaders in their own learning process as well as knowledgeable about the alignment to future employment.
STEM East will seek to maintain and expand this project over time to include high schools (align curriculum), colleges (align degree/certification courses) and other private partners (consult/participate in instruction, externships/internships, resource development). This focused attention to a public/private workforce development process eliminates the possibility that projects will become isolated with no feeder program to the next level. All STEM East projects become part of a network that inspire, engage and align student education with higher learning and entry into the workforce.