*Special Edition*

Best of STEM in North Carolina for 2018

Please enjoy our compilation of some of the best stories in STEM education this year.


National Experts: Forming STEM Ecosystems is top priority

Acting on recommendations from education experts, the federal government this month issued the “Charting A Course for Success: America’s Strategy for STEM Education,” listing participation of all Americans in STEM ecosystems as a top priority. The plan, announced Dec. 4 at the White House, says STEM ecosystems are pathways for improving STEM literacy, ensuring a strong workforce and global competitiveness for all, and an important means to support diversity, equity, and inclusion in a thriving STEM workforce.


SMT Center releases featured video on #Why STEM?

The North Carolina Science, Mathematics, and Technology (SMT) Education Center was created in 2002 to help provide all children in the state with the necessary resources, knowledge and skills to excel in science, mathematics and technology. The SMT Center also believes that STEM is more than Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. It’s "Strategies That Engage Minds" through hands-on, active involvement in those fields of education that promotes essential cognitive skills for the 21st century. Quality STEM education embodies the how and why something works. This year the SMT Center produced a video that explained the value and importance of STEM in North Carolina.


Four receive first Dr. Samuel Houston Leadership Awards

The North Carolina Alliance for School Leadership Development (NCASLD) and the North Carolina School Superintendents’ Association (NCSSA) recognized four education leaders this year for the inaugural Dr. Samuel Houston Leadership Award. Learn more about each recipient and read the full story.


North Carolina students share awesome China experience

The North Carolina International Science Challenge (NCISC) is a competition that takes place yearly for high school students who are interested in science and engineering. Students selected travel to China to discuss their research with scientists and engineers and meet with students from other countries at the Beijing Youth Science Creation Competition (BYSCC). The NCISC is offered jointly by the SMT Center and the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center. This year's participating students documented their week in China through individual blogs. Read all about their adventures.


67 North Carolina teachers receive PRISM awards

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund, with a total allocation of more than $200,000 this year, selected 67 North Carolina teachers to receive Promoting Innovation in Science and Mathematics (PRISM) awards.


Kenan Fellows names 2018-19 teacher leaders

The Kenan Fellows Program for Teacher Leadership awarded 25 North Carolina public school educators this year with 2018-19 fellowships. The K-12 teachers were selected from a highly-qualified applicant pool of more than 70 educators following a competitive application process. The 2018-19 Kenan Fellows spent at least three weeks this summer interning with local experts in agriculture, scientific research, energy, high-tech manufacturing, and other STEM fields. Each Kenan Fellow also received a $5,000 stipend and participated in 80 hours of professional development. Congratulations to this year's Kenan Fellows! The call for 2019-20 Kenan Fellowship Applications is now open through Jan. 21, 2019.


SMT Awards honor state's best and brightest in STEM

Each year, the SMT Center offers awards that recognize individuals and organizations whose extraordinary contributions to science, mathematics, and technology education in North Carolina. Nominations are accepted each fall (open now for 2019) and recipients of the awards are honored in the spring at the Celebration of Science, Mathematics, and Technology. This year marked the 11th annual celebration. In addition to recognizing winning students and teachers across the state, the SMT Center also highlighted awardees through video presentations. View 2018 and past winners below and nominate a STEM role model for 2019.


Report shows how popular STEM really is in North Carolina

The North Carolina Science Festival premiered in September 2010 as the first statewide science festival in the United States. Todd Boyette and Denise Young, leaders in science education from Morehead Planetarium and Science Center, developed the initial plans for the festival. Together with other Morehead staff members and business, education and government leaders, they raised funds, recruited event hosts across the state, built an infrastructure for the festival, and promoted hundreds of events with favorable reviews. The festival expanded in 2018 to run the entire month of April, resulting in a record number of participants at nearly 1,000 STEM events. In eight years, more than 2 million people have participated in the festival. Read the festival report from 2018.


North Carolina STEM stars shine at 2018 STEMmy's

The 3rd annual STEMmy Awards celebrated individuals and organizations from the RTP community who continuously show extraordinary enthusiasm and efforts within the dynamic fields of STEM. Congratulations to all winners recognized this year. Great job STEM in the Park for hosting another great annual event.


NCDPI releases emergency funding after Hurricane Florence

In October, the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction authorized disbursement of $60 million in emergency capital funding for the public schools damaged by Hurricane Florence.


NC School districts receive coding, mobile app grants

Sixteen school districts in North Carolina have been awarded grants totaling $800,000 under the second round of the Coding and Mobile App Development Grant Program launched last year with funding from the General Assembly. The grants, which range from $80,000 to $28,000, support partnerships with local businesses to help schools develop computer science, coding, and mobile app development programs for middle and high school students. Districts and schools began implementing their programs in the fall. Applications for the next grant cycle will be available online in spring 2019. View the 2018 grant recipients below.


Burroughs Wellcome Fund awards 13 informal STEM programs

Several STEM education programs across North Carolina received Student STEM Enrichment grant awards in September from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund. The Student STEM Enrichment Program (SSEP) provides up to $180,000 over three years to support educational opportunities that take place outside of traditional classroom time. Thirteen programs received a total of $2.1 million in funding this year. Since 1996, BWF has provided funding to 240 organizations for a total of $36.2 million in informal STEM education. As of 2017, SSEP has reached an estimated 38,000 North Carolina students spanning all 100 counties through out-of-school time, inquiry-based STEM programming. This year, 89 applications were received across the state.


Your online stop for STEM programs and opportunities

The NC STEM Center's goal is to be the first stop for parents and educators to gain information about STEM programming across the state. Our online portal helps introduce parents and educators to STEM organizations in North Carolina. We also post and share various career opportunities on our Job Seekers page - free site registration is required to access. In addition, this year we continued to offer our bi-weekly e-Update as well as our Everything STEM email to highlight weekly events in your neighborhood.

Thanks for your continued support of the NC STEM Center and Happy Holidays!


Thank you for a great year. We're excited for what's to come in 2019!

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