The Sixth Annual STEMNow Celebration

Tandon is set to surpass pledge to train 500 New York City public school teachers

Ben Esner and John B. King Jr.

Ben Esner, Director of Tandon’s Center for K12 STEM Education and John B. King, Jr., president and CEO of The Education Trust and a former U.S. Secretary of Education at the kick-off luncheon for STEMNow

On Thursday, July 12, 2018, former Secretary of Education Dr. John B. King, Jr, sat down for a Q & A session at a luncheon attended by hundreds of students, teachers, and mentors involved in NYU Tandon’s STEMNow programs.

STEMNow was celebrating its sixth year of educating New York City’s K through 12 students in science, technology, engineering, and math, using project-based curriculum ranging from programming video games to building model cities. The 12 courses offered under the umbrella of STEMNow take place throughout the summer at NYU Tandon’s Brooklyn campus and are an integral part of NYU Tandon’s 2014 commitment to the White House to train 500 New York City public school teachers in 10 years and impact approximately 50,000 students. This summer, just four years after that goal was set, 80% of those 500 public school teachers have been trained.

During the event, King and other speakers touched upon a variety of topics, including the importance of science education in K through 12 classrooms in lower income areas and evolving teaching standards. 


The Speakers:

Dean Sreenivasan

Katepalli Sreenivasan

Dean, NYU Tandon School of Engineering

"Our next commitment is to keep our school a place of opportunity for aspiring scholars of all levels. This applies not only to students who are already here, but also to the fact that we make great efforts to recruit a number of students who are supporting their families while going to college, a diverse body of students in every respect, and as many women as men. We have an excellent track record in all these metrics, but our job is done well only when you, that is, students, take advantage of this opportunity to enhance your knowledge, learn a new skill or tool, or do something concrete during your stay with us.”

John B. King, Jr.

John B. King, Jr.

President & CEO of The Education Trust and 10th Secretary of Education serving in the Obama Administration

“It’s one thing to learn about science in theory, from a book or on a board. It’s another thing to be in a lab, doing experiments, seeing science in action, and we have to take the same approach to how we prepare teachers.

To do science well also requires foundational skills in literacy and math, to be able to read research articles and analyze them, to be able to do the underlying math that allows you to be an effective chemistry or physics students. And I learned that, particularly at the middle school level, not all teachers have been prepared to integrate literacy and math skills into the science classroom in the ways they need to be. So this is a place for professional development and collaboration with our practicing scientists, folks who are in labs, folks who are in the corporate sector doing science research. That collaboration is one of the ways we can get to that goal.”

Ben Esner

Ben Esner

Director of Tandon’s Center for K12 STEM Education

“I often describe my job as a community organizer, working to get different people and institutions to row in the same direction. I need to acknowledge and thank the members of that community. I want to call out my colleagues at the Center for K-12 education who undertake this ambitious initiative each year. I want to call out our 40 faculty members and 120 graduate and undergraduate students for their work as instructors, mentors, and supporters.”

Dr. Vikram Kapila

Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

"Since early 2000s, NYU Tandon has been leading in creating, researching, and scaling high quality STEM professional development programs for K-12 teachers so that they can enhance the educational experiences of their students. Our research has demonstrated that professional development programs enhance teachers' content knowledge, familiarity with disciplinary concepts, and their self-efficacy. Moreover, students of our projects' teachers derive a multitude of benefits; for example, they gain an enhanced understanding of STEM content, participate in collaborative projects to develop teamwork skills, and hone their communication skills. NYU Tandon's Annual STEM NOW event continues to grow each year, with  increased participation of K-12 teachers and students, as well as our own faculty and engineering students. This illustrates the growing acceptance by all concerned that high quality STEM education is critical for the preparation and success of young students. The NYU Tandon community is committed and proud to have the opportunity to support our K-12 partners as they innovate for success.”


Fikir Sanders

Corporate Sustainability Manager, DTCC

In the Computer Science for Cyber Security (CS for CS) summer program for high school women

"It’s important to think about STEM talent and the STEM pipeline — that’s why we’re all here today.”