June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
Division Experimentation & Lab-Oriented Studies
22.1096.1 - 22.1096.20
Navy Metrology Engineering Center STEM Outreach through the STEP Program: Challenges, Lessons Learned and Application to DoD StrategyThe Science and Technology Education Partnership (STEP) Program has been operating inRiverside, California as a 501 (c) non-profit for over 10 years. The Navy’s MetrologyEngineering Center (MEC) is a Department of Defense engineering activity which has been along time STEP Program partner. Since its inception, STEP’s focus has been on the 3rd through8th grades in order to increase the numbers of students qualified to obtain technical educationsand degrees at higher levels. With the assistance of MEC, the STEP Program model has beenexported to other areas of the United States with some demonstrated success as well as somelessons learned concerning underlying requirements. Over 50,000 students and 3,000 of theirteachers have experienced the STEP Program to dateThis paper will explore the original STEP Program model with the challenges faced over theyears that caused refinements to be made. The paper will address the importance of STEMoutreach in the early grades along with the need for focusing increased resources at this earlyeducational stage. Insights into the lessons learned and many issues faced over the past 10 yearsof attempting to succeed at STEM outreach in the early grades will be presented from thissuccessful program’s perspective. The refined STEP model template will be provided along withthe challenges faced to successfully export this program model to other communities withMEC‘s help. Achievements to date will be provided along with future program goals.This paper will also present information showing an increase in national activity and focus onSTEM outreach efforts such as STEP. As a concrete example of increasing STEM outreach, theco-authors of this paper from the Navy’s Metrology Engineering Center located in Corona,California will present their view of the STEP Program and its role in helping them execute therecently released Department of Defense’s (DoD) Strategic Plan on STEM Education andOutreach. MEC DoD has renewed its commitment to STEM outreach with this recently releasedstrategic plan for 2010 through 2014. The basics of the DoD strategic plan including vision,mission and goals will be presented along with the stated underlying rationale for DoD’srenewed focus on STEM education and outreach. The specific motivation for MEC’s interest intheir long term commitment to STEM outreach will be shown to parallel the driving factors thatmotivated DoD generally.
Sugg, D., & Fishell, J. V., & Hovakemian, A. (2011, June), Navy Metrology Engineering Center STEM Outreach Through the STEP Program: Challenges, Lessons Learned, and Application to DoD Strategy Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18687
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