Mayville State Granted $250,000 for STEM Initiative
There is growing concern across North Dakota and the nation about the low number of students, teachers, and professionals prepared in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Somewhere between the fourth grade and high school, students are falling behind in mathematics and science ability. By the time most students reach their final two years of high school, fewer than 15% have enough mathematics and science knowledge to pursue science and technology degrees in college (U.S. Department of Education). Not only are the students underprepared, they are also losing interest. Additional studies show that females and students from lower socioeconomic levels are less likely to enroll in STEM-related courses.
Mayville State University has been granted $250,000 from the North Dakota University System for the 2009-2011 STEM Initiative to assist with these issues. The funding will be used to implement several initiatives impacting Mayville State University’s teacher education program, collaborative P-12 partners, and the community.
Mayville State is partnering with the Heart of the Valley Interactive Television Consortium, Red River Valley Education Cooperative, Mayville State University Child Development Programs (Head Start, Early Head Start, and Pre-K), and the Eastern North Dakota Area Health Education Center.
Plans are to enhance Mayville State University’s Pre-K, elementary and secondary teacher education curriculum in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics to ensure that the teacher education program is aligned with the P-12 standards outlined by the state of North Dakota. Mayville State will develop, provide in-service training, and send STEM curricular kits with accompanying lesson plans and rubrics that supplement P-12 curriculum alignment to school districts. A STEM certification for Mayville State’s teacher education students, as well as professionals already in the workforce, will be developed and implemented.
Mayville State will develop and implement comprehensive STEM-enriched professional development programs for its partners. This will include an Educator’s STEM Boot Camp and professional development offered via interactive television.
A STEM Career Day for partnering HOV-ITV and RRVEC high school students will be held, and elementary school students will have access to the STEM College for Kids summer experience. A Child-Parent STEM Carnival to showcase science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills among the P-12 populations will be held. An on-line career awareness course for high school juniors and seniors and college freshman will be developed and implemented, and iPod lessons for students needing additional academic assistance in mathematics and science will be created.
The faculty and administration at Mayville State University are pleased about the opportunity to help turn the current STEM disparity in eastern North Dakota through their STEM Initiative. Some very exciting outcomes are definitely in store.