By Bob Katzen
The Executive Office of Education and the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Advisory Council announced its third annual STEM week designed to boost the interest, awareness and ability for all learners to envision themselves in STEM education and employment opportunities.
“The theme for the third annual event on October 19-23 is ‘See Yourself in STEM,’ with a particular focus on the power of mentoring,” said the announcement. “Women, people of color, first-generation students, low-income individuals, English language learners, and people with disabilities are underrepresented in STEM industries and make up an increasing portion of the overall workforce. But the demographics of STEM fields have remained largely the same. We need more young people to see themselves in STEM. The theme is aimed at encouraging and supporting underrepresented youth, especially Black and brown students, in STEM fields to pursue STEM careers as well as bolster their persistence through STEM education with a mentor that is engaged, supportive, and shares in the many unique parts of their identity.
“This year made it abundantly clear how important STEM professions are to all our lives, and we hope that more young people will explore the opportunities that exist in STEM fields and pursue those careers that benefit us all,” said Gov. Baker.
“Since the Baker-Polito Administration launched STEM Week two years ago, tens of thousands of students of all ages in every region of the Commonwealth have participated in engaging, challenging, and fun learning experiences to help get them hooked on STEM,” said Secretary of Education James Peyser. “Notwithstanding this year’s unique circumstances, the STEM Council and STEM educators are committed to sustaining the momentum with exciting activities, both online and in-person.”
Last year’s second annual statewide STEM Week saw schools, non-profit organizations, colleges, museums and business partners all participate in hosting and organizing more than 1,000 events for 100,000 students across the nation ranging from preschool to college to adult.