Leading the Way
Established in 2005 by the School of Engineering the program was originally created for the engineering department to introduce the local K-12 community to the field of engineering. It incorporated a combination of classroom visits, campus field trips, in-class activities, and group discussions with professional and student engineers to effectively teach young students about engineering. However, the program has morphed from engineering outreach to an Outreach and Recruitment program that includes all departments within CCEC. The program is now a pipeline to student, teachers and parents to increase interest and achievement in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Since its inception, the outreach program has touched approximately 10,000 or more students in STEM activities across five counties through direct school partnerships, articulation agreements with local community colleges, home school networks, and many organizations within the last 10 years through various engineering activities and outreach initiatives. There has been a steady increase in community awareness due to the outreach and marketing efforts by CCEC within the K-12 educational system and the professional community. CCEC recognizes their part to increase the awareness of K-12 in STEM at the pre-college level to ensure students are prepared for the competitiveness of the global workforce.
Excerpt from Engaging Students in STEM Education “…Engaging students in high quality STEM education requires programs to include rigorous curriculum, instruction, and assessment, integrate technology and engineering into the science and mathematics curriculum, and also promote scientific inquiry and the engineering design process. All students must be a part of the STEM vision, and all teachers must be provided with the proper professional development opportunities preparing them to guide all their students toward acquiring STEM literacy. By focusing on student engagement, educators from institutions of higher education and K-12 schools can work together to develop pedagogical models that provide rigorous, well-rounded education and outstanding STEM instruction.