Summer of STEM Wins National and Local Support

Watch the video to see excerpts from New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña and National Science Foundation’s Susan Singer.

In celebration of the Center’s largest Summer STEM programming to date, last Thursday July 9, NYU SoE Dean Katepelli Sreenivasan welcomed students, teachers, collaborators, and sponsors to the 2015 Summer of STEM Kick-Off Luncheon. Acknowledging NYU’s institution-wide support for STEM Education, including contributions from faculty, postdocs, and graduate students and a commitment to President Obama to train 500 school teachers in STEM over the next 10 years, he said “It is in the genes of the institution. We regard STEM [education] as an institutional goal, that is something that is very important for us.” IMG_2023

New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña noted that quality STEM education is necessary to make New York City “the place where people come to see what’s innovative, what’s exciting, and most important, what is it that’s getting our kids to succeed, graduate college, and be workforce ready.” Richard Langford, Senior Education Specialist from Microsoft, one of the primary sponsors of SoE’s work in NYC Schools this summer, would like to duplicate the program across the country, noting the importance of training future employees for technology companies like Microsoft. Mike Ruiz, from National Grid echoed these sentiments.IMG_2065

After touring campus classrooms and labs where K12 students and teachers are learning robotics, mechatronics, cyber security, and the science of smart cities, the National Science Foundation’s Director of the Division of Undergraduate Education, Dr. Susan Singer noted the rarity of K12 students and teachers, undergraduate, graduate students, and university faculty combining efforts in what she called an “ecosystems approach” to STEM education.IMG_1991

The biggest challenge facing STEM fields, industry, and the economy, according to Dr. Singer, is making innovative educational opportunities available to diverse students so that we may, “… [think] differently together about the grand challenges that we’re facing.” She commended the partnerships and entrepreneurial spirit that has enabled NYU SoE and its Center for K12 STEM Education to disseminate its methods widely.