Wednesday, November 13, 2013 - Governor Deval Patrick today announced a renewed strategic plan for tying economic development to educational enhancement in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) at the annual Massachusetts STEM Summit at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough. Massachusetts is recognized as a national leader in STEM education as a result of the Patrick Administration's strategic investments in programs and initiatives that are developing a highly skilled workforce, fostering economic development and ultimately positioning the Commonwealth as a leader in the 21st century innovation-based global economy.
"Sustaining and widening Massachusetts' leadership in STEM is in not only our collective economic self-interest, but it is our generational responsibility to provide the best possible opportunities to stimulate the minds and broaden the potential of our children and grandchildren," said Governor Patrick.
In 2009, Governor Patrick signed Executive Order No. 513, creating the Governor's STEM Advisory Council. The Governor, alongside former Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray, charged the Council with creating a comprehensive plan to strengthen STEM education by teaming with academic and business leaders to develop a series of strategies that will increase student interest in STEM, training for teachers and new opportunities for learning in STEM areas. Version 1.0 of the Plan was released at the 2010 STEM Summit and was recognized then as a model for how states address challenges and opportunities associated with STEM. Today, Governor Patrick released Version 2.0, which reflects improved data metrics, sets direction for the years ahead and highlights concrete strategies that can be used locally to catalyze action around the goals of the Plan in order to prepare the Commonwealth's residents to be STEM literate.
The STEM Plan, known as "Expanding the Pipeline for All: Massachusetts' Plan for Excellence in STEM Education," includes recommendations to support goals in five areas:
1. Increase student interest in STEM areas; 2. Increase student achievement among all Pre-K-12 students in order to prepare graduates to be civically and college and/or career ready; 3. Increase the percentage of skilled educators who teach Pre-K-16 STEM classes; 4. Increase the percent of students completing post-secondary degrees or certificates in STEM subjects; and 5. STEM degrees and certificate attainment will be aligned with corresponding opportunity in STEM-related fields to match the state's workforce needs for a STEM talent pipeline.
Today's STEM Summit is part of a series of events the Governor is holding throughout the fall to demonstrate the types of investments and planning his Administration is making in every region of the Commonwealth to expand growth and opportunity to all of our residents. At the Summit, hundreds of educators from early childhood, elementary and secondary and higher education, as well as partners in workforce training, economic development, the private sector and community organizations meet to focus on the state's progress, discuss STEM Plan 2.0 and explore how to best expand interest in and opportunity for growth in the STEM fields.
In addition to being rated number one by the U.S. Department of Education on the nationwide Race to the Top Competition, Massachusetts has also been recognized by the National Governor's Association's Center for Best Practices, Change the Equation and Innovate+Education as a top STEM state. Earlier this Fall, the Patrick Administration announced that 10th grade students once again achieved record high performance in mathematics and science and technology/engineering (STEM), according to the 2013 statewide results of the MCAS exams.
As a result of the STEM Advisory Council's work over the last three years, the Patrick Administration has helped to form partnerships with key stakeholders in academia and industry that have led to funding support for STEM education as the Commonwealth builds a strong foundation for future academic success.
The Council is closely coordinating with federal partners as well, under the leadership of Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy, III. As the honorary chair of the Governor's STEM Advisory Council replacing former Lieutenant Governor Murray, Congressman Kennedy is a member of the House Committee on Science and Technology. An engineer by training, he is a member of the Congressional Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Caucus. Earlier this summer, he joined New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and New York Congressman Paul Tonko in introducing the Educating Tomorrow's Engineers Act (ETEA), which will help increase student achievement and interest in STEM fields.
"STEM lies at the intersection of education, economics and social justice," said Congressman Joe Kennedy, Honorary Chair of the Governor's STEM Advisory Council. "It is a vehicle not just for growth and innovation but for access and opportunity. Thanks to the tremendous leadership of the Patrick Administration, Massachusetts has led the way in setting a national STEM agenda. STEM Plan 2.0 builds on that success and works to expand our efforts even farther, so that zip code, skin color and gender can no longer be used as indicators of a person's interest or achievement in STEM."
"Massachusetts has set a national leader in STEM education and the University of Massachusetts is proud to play a major role in this important area to the Commonwealth's economy," said University of Massachusetts President Robert Caret. "Being among the Commonwealth's leaders at the 10th STEM Summit is a critical statement about the role that higher education plays in this continuum of learning that begins with Early Education throughout adulthood. We are especially proud of the more than 5,000 STEM majors to whom we awarded Bachelor's, Master's and Doctoral Degrees and Certificates last year. This represents a 50 percent increase in Bachelor's Degrees in STEM earned across the five campuses since 2007; and a 39 percent increase in STEM Certificates and Graduate Degrees since 2007."
"The Patrick Administration has made STEM educational development a top priority," said Secretary of Education Matthew Malone. "In order to compete in a global economy, we have to continue to grow jobs and close achievement gaps by inspiring as many of our students as possible to pursue majors and careers in the STEM fields. This is critical work for our future and will build a stronger, more resilient Massachusetts economy for the 21st century."
"Massachusetts leads the nation with its innovative economy," said Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki. "Investing in STEM education is one of the best ways to continue this leadership."
"Investments in STEM education will have a direct impact on our future workforce, and our evaluation of the state's STEM plan continues to acknowledge this correlation," said Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Joanne F. Goldstein. "By preparing students today to pursue and successfully obtain STEM degrees and credentials, we are building a stronger and more talented pipeline of individuals ready to compete in STEM occupations throughout the Commonwealth and across several innovative industries."
"Employers are investing in STEM as a business imperative," said JD Chesloff, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Business Roundtable, an organization of CEOs working to strengthen the state's economy, and Chair of the Governor's STEM Advisory Council's Executive Committee. "They are championing innovative programs and supporting the implementation of the nationally renowned STEM Plan to keep the Commonwealth competitive in the global economy. The Roundtable supports the updates made in STEM Plan 2.0. Governor Patrick and Congressman Kennedy's leadership and collaboration with the Roundtable and employers in general are making Massachusetts a national leader in STEM education."
"I commend Governor Patrick for his continued emphasis on improving our statewide education, K through 12, specifically in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics," said Robert Kraft, Chairman and CEO of The Kraft Group. "We are proud to host the STEM Summit at Gillette Stadium once again this year. The STEM fields are essential to our growth if we want to remain competitive in today's global economy. As we all know, an investment in education will continue to pay dividends for generations to come. For the past five years, we have partnered with Raytheon to create a math and science curriculum around the Patriots' Hall of Fame and have had over 75,000 students participate. As an extension of that relationship, the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation and Raytheon host an annual science fair called the Science of Sport. Raytheon employees mentor students at the Boys & Girls Clubs on sports-themed science fair projects. They make science fun. Hopefully, through their mentorship, they will inspire a new generation of STEM students."
About the Governor's STEM Advisory Council and Annual STEM Summit:
As part of his Administration's efforts to align education with workforce development, Governor Patrick established the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Advisory in October 2009, to increase coordination and collaboration among existing STEM programs and resources. Building on the Patrick Administration's comprehensive education agenda, in 2010, former Lieutenant Governor Murray tasked the Governor's STEM Advisory Council to develop and implement the state's first STEM Plan, which outlined the state's first ever strategic plan for tying economic and workforce development to educational enhancement in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.
The longest running STEM Summit in the country, the Massachusetts STEM Summit has grown from a gathering of 250 in 2004 to over 1,000 attendees today. Hosted by the Massachusetts Business Roundtable, the Governor's STEM Advisory Council and the UMass Donahue Institute and sponsored by the state's leading education, research and technology organizations, the daylong STEM Summit brings together educators, innovators and advocates from throughout Massachusetts to address the challenges and achievements of the state's STEM plan. The day will include 43 break-out sessions with panels, workshops, seminars and discussions that address issues such as curriculum planning, job training, partnerships between education and industry, fostering STEM culture beyond the classroom, teaching advanced concepts in math and computer science, and defining career pathways, with three unique sessions devoted to introducing and discussing STEM Plan 2.0, a revised version of the 2010 plan that lays out the vision, goals, and outcomes of the state's ongoing STEM initiative. For the first time this year, the Summit will also feature a Resource Room, where educators and innovators will showcase ways they're incorporating advanced STEM concepts into activities and lessons for pre-K through college students.
To read the STEM Plan or learn more about the Patrick Administration's STEM Initiatives and the Governor's STEM Advisory Council, visit www.mass.gov/governor/stem.