Virginia is for STEM!
We want students, families, and businesses to know that science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education is a priority in Virginia. Yesterday, it was my distinct pleasure to join Governor Ralph Northam as he signed Executive Order Thirty-Six, establishing the Virginia Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Education Commission.
The Virginia STEM Education Commission will seek to address the educational inequities which often limit access to advanced courses in STEM disciplines, credentials, and work-based learning for many of the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable and underrepresented students. In addition, the Commission will encourage collaboration among government and non-government entities on collective goals to support efforts to track state data and outcome metrics, reshape future curriculum, and course design and inform state and local policy. The Commission will be tasked with developing a statewide STEM plan to create a unified vision and dynamic set of shared goals to strategically inform how we prepare Virginia’s students for the STEM jobs of the future.
I’m excited that this Commission’s mission truly embodies the core values of our Virginia is for Learners campaign. STEM curriculum and learning exposes students to instruction that focuses on key skills for success in a modern world – Virginia’s 5C’s: critical thinking, creative thinking, communication, collaboration, and citizenship skills. Hands-on experiences and deeper learning activities will prepare every student with the content knowledge, skills, and attributes they need to be successful after graduation.
During the signing event, the First Lady, who will chair the Commission, pointed out that 50 years ago during this week, the United States sent a man to the moon. This was an incredible accomplishment and was made possible by STEM professionals here in Virginia. The Virginia STEM Education Commission will ensure the Commonwealth continues to be a leader in diverse and innovative education for all of the dreamers and doers of the future.
The full text of Executive Order Thirty-Six can be found here.