STEM Education

May 9, 2017
By David E. Meadows

I wrote about STEM—science, technology, engineering and mathematics—being a critical element of national security (CENS) in July 2015. At the time, 8.5 million STEM jobs already were on the market, with the number growing. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects more than 9 million additional STEM graduates will be needed by 2022.

So, how is the nation going to meet this CENS need that crosses nominal disciplines such as the economy, power, water, transportation and defense?

May 1, 2017

Shopping for good is made easy by the AFCEA Educational Foundation and the CauseNetwork, which offer consumers access to discounts at more than 1,000 retailers that donate a portion of each purchase to support science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education. Shop for STEM allows anyone to register and shop from a range of retailers, from small businesses to giants such as Amazon.com, Target and Wal-Mart. Simply visit shopforstem.org, and sign up quickly and easily with your email address. 

January 24, 2017

Northrop Grumman Corporation is now accepting applications for its engineering scholars competition, which will provide $192,000 in college scholarships this year to promising high school seniors graduating from Maryland schools interested in studying engineering, according to a news release. Additionally, the company will award 26 scholarships to students who live near company campuses in Alabama, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, New York, Ohio, Utah and Virginia.

January 1, 2017
The AFCEA Educational Foundation provided Lumberton Junior High School in North Carolina with a $1,000 STEM grant in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. Damages in the state totaled more than $1.5 billion.

It can be easy to forget that AFCEA is more than a professional association—AFCEA is a community. When the southeastern United States was pummeled by Hurricane Matthew in October, the AFCEA Educational Foundation and the North Carolina and South Carolina Low Country chapters were able to provide assistance to local schools in the hardest-hit areas.  

November 18, 2016
By Rachel Lilly
Kevin Kless and his students accept a Gravely STEM Teaching Tool Grant, which will support their physics and chemistry program known as PACE.

For many people in the U.S., the end of Thanksgiving marks the start of a whirlwind shopping season. From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, the search is on for the perfect gifts. But the holidays also bring about a season of charitable giving and a day known as Giving Tuesday.

Giving Tuesday, celebrated on Tuesday, November 29, is a global movement fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. Using the hashtag #GivingTuesday, nonprofits around the world will raise funds and awareness for their causes. The event encourages participants to find a way to give back with their time, donations or the power of their voices.

November 1, 2016

Notes from scholarship and grant recipients are constant reminders of the importance of corporate, member and chapter contributions to the individuals the AFCEA Educational Foundation serves. The foundation provides potential benefactors with the facts; the beneficiaries of their generosity tell the story.

July 27, 2016
By Sandra Jontz

Much attention has been focused on recent achievements by women who crack or break traditional glass ceilings. In its recent series on Women in STEM, SIGNAL has highlighted many of these achievements.

We’re keeping this momentum of women in power going—and next week in Georgia, AFCEA International will host its first Women in STEM panel at TechNet Augusta.

July 12, 2016
By Sandra Jontz

For 10 weeks, we have addressed the issue of women in STEM and why many leave the field after working so hard to earn their college degrees. For 10 weeks, we've run features on prominent women who stuck with their careers in science, technology, engineering and math, despite some hurdles. For 10 weeks, salient points have reverberated as leaders talk about the sexual harassment, the pay gap, waning student interest and the need for mentors. But we're not done talking about it. Next month, AFCEA International hosts its first Women in STEM panel at TechNet Augusta to tackle the issue. You should join us. 

July 1, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Natalie Givans, senior vice president at Booz Allen Hamilton, says businesses and other organizations must appeal to the passions of young women who are well-qualified for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) jobs to draw them to these disciplines.

Employers today face a scarcity of qualified candidates for coveted jobs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM—jobs widely regarded as vital to U.S. economic and military strength. One key reason for the lack of skilled workers is gender inequities, which share as much of the blame for the dearth of diversity in these fields.

July 1, 2016
By Maryann Lawlor
Engineering always fascinated Mylene Frances Lee, a technical team lead at ASM Research. After trying a couple of other fields, she landed a job in technology 21 years ago and has watched the woman-led company go from 40 employees to more than 400.

For some women, following the dream of a computer-programming career takes a pretty indirect route. Consider Mylene Frances Lee, who landed at ASM Research despite earning a seemingly unrelated degree in family life and child development. But maybe that is not such a bad background for someone who ended up working with a bunch of screen junkies.

Lee considered many careers. A native of the Philippines, she always was interested in computers. But when the time came to choose a major, she discovered that the University of the Philippines’ engineering college, although open to all, was entirely male. Instead, she decided to major in accounting. 

April 1, 2016
By Lt. Col. Francis Shen, ANG, and Capt. Michael Nettis, USAF
Hawaii Air National Guardsmen evaluate network vulnerabilities during the Po‘oihe 2015 cybersecurity exercise at the University of Hawaii’s Information Technology Center. The cybersecurity exercise is part of a hurricane preparedness effort that encompasses several state and federal government organizations.

As the U.S. Cyber Command recruits 6,200 cyber warriors for teams positioned around the world, it must deliberately work to develop a new generation of cyber-minded warfighters rather than simply repurpose existing service members to meet its goal. The nation may not be prepared to defend cyberspace unless it emphasizes key skills early in students’ educational development. Many of these efforts must begin locally, and some military forces already are working in that direction.

March 1, 2016

Many people received cellphones, video games, computers and a wide variety of electronic devices during the holidays. Rather than stockpile your old electronics, consider donating them to benefit the AFCEA Educational Foundation. Not only is this an easy way to clear your e-clutter, but you also can reap a tax benefit. 

November 1, 2015
Matt Stratford, managing principal, BridgePhase LLC (l), presents a $3,000 check to AFCEA Educational Foundation Executive Director Vince Patton to sponsor the 2016 BridgePhase STEM Major Scholarship.

 

BridgePhase LLC, a small business provider of information technology consulting and professional services, will sponsor an annual scholarship for one science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduate student, beginning in 2016. The $3,000 award will recognize a student enrolled or enrolling in a STEM graduate degree program at an accredited U.S. academic institution. Selection for this program will be competitive and based on a candidate’s overall undergraduate and/or graduate academic performance.

August 1, 2015
Students from Central Hardin High School in Cecilia, Kentucky, prepare their robotics entry for a Project Lead the Way (PLTW) competition. An AFCEA scholarship funded teacher training for PLTW—a leading provider of K-12 STEM programs—at the University

As dependence on technology grows, the need for experts in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) increases. Equally important are ongoing discussions on whether academic institutions in the United States are turning out enough qualified graduates in the STEM disciplines. According to the most recent report from the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic and Statistics Administration, STEM workers drive innovation and competitiveness by generating new ideas, companies and industries. However, U.S. businesses continually voice concerns about the quality and availability of STEM workers.

May 1, 2015

Avaya Government Solutions is committed to helping the next generation of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals with a $25,000 gift to the AFCEA Educational Foundation’s STEM scholarships and grants programs for 2015.

March 1, 2015

If you’re like most consumers, shopping on the Internet has become a common occurrence. In 2014, more than 1.12 billion people worldwide shopped online; in the U.S. alone, 196.6 million shoppers took to the Web, according to online statistics portal Statista. Internet shopping is expected to continue its exponential rise during the next five years. As Dr. Vince Patton, executive director for the AFCEA Educational Foundation, puts it, “Online shopping is no longer the wave of the future. It’s here now and has become a new normal.”

December 19, 2014
By Maryann Lawlor

The Advantage Business Media Young Mind Awards challenges middle school, high school and college students to design, build and present an innovative solution that solves a problem utilizing a wireless technology. Applicants must identify and describe a problem or process that needs improvement, build the product solution and demonstrate how their solution helped resolve the problem or improve the process.

Students are required to submit their designs and a short video demonstrating their finished product. A panel of judges comprising industry-recognized professionals will review the submissions based on four principles: creativity, comprehensiveness, clarity of expression and demonstration. 

December 2, 2014
By Rachel Lilly

On the heels of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping frenzy, a new tradition is making its way into the headlines: #GivingTuesday. The global initiative, celebrated today, December 2, encourages people to celebrate generosity and give back—with time, money or support—to a cause, organization or individual.

January 10, 2014
By Helen Mosher

Florida State University (FSU) has received more than $14 million in grants to create a program that will provide focused training, resources and support to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) teachers.

November 8, 2012
By Rita Boland

The U.S. Department of State is hosting its first-ever Youth TechCamp in the Pacific region later this month. Coordinated in conjunction with Pasifika Nexus and the University of the South Pacific, Youth TechCamp Fiji will offer six days of training to as many as 300 youths from various Pacific islands. Local and international technology experts from the fields of digital content creation, mobile applications and social activism will participate as well. Organizers aim to enable future leaders from the region to contribute to policy development, encourage local content creation and leverage connection technologies in positive ways.

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