Learn more about the upcoming 2018 STEM Summit here.
In 2007, a statewide partnership of education, research, business, government, and nonprofit sectors was formed to help build a strong educational foundation in STEM in order to help propel the state of Maine’s future economic prosperity. The Maine STEM Collaborative focuses on increasing the quality of STEM education, aspirations, and public awareness through the integration, coordination, and promotion of efforts throughout the state. The Collaborative’s activities include outreach to promote and align STEM educational initiatives, and particularly a statewide event to bring together those involved in these efforts, the Maine STEM Summit.
Beginning in 2008, the Maine STEM Collaborative convened biannual statewide conferences to promote efforts to improve STEM education. Maine’s first STEM Summit in 2008 brought together educators, businesspeople, researchers, and government and nonprofit organization representatives to increase public awareness of STEM needs and learning opportunities in Maine. The second STEM Summit, held in January 2010 at the Augusta Civic Center, focused on STEM occupations and career pathways.
The Maine STEM Collaborative commissioned four reports in 2010 and 2011 that highlight specific aspects of the Maine STEM landscape, which were summarized in STEM Education in Maine: An Executive Summary of Student Performance, Teacher Preparedness, and STEM Programs, which was distributed to 2012 STEM Summit participants.
These are the Maine STEM Collaborative’s objectives:
- Foster innovation in schools through the vertical alignment of STEM education in the state from pre-K through graduate education, and the horizontal alignment across all disciplines.
- Support the state’s human network for teacher professional development and leadership development in STEM.
- Integrate, coordinate, and refine existing STEM efforts in the state for greater program effectiveness and impact.
- Integrate a STEM career pathways initiative into all areas of P-20 education in order to generate greater awareness and interest.
- Make a strong case for STEM for current and future Maine economic development.
- Develop systems and processes for gathering, monitoring, and analyzing baseline and ongoing data on STEM education in the state.
- Work toward greater financial support for STEM education efforts in Maine.
The activities and discussions of the STEM Summit further each of these objectives, particularly the first three.