SHS at work on STEM Action Plan

In an effort to improve education in science, mathematics, engineering and technology and to better prepare students to post-secondary education and the workplace, Seneca High School had the first meeting of its STEM Initiative Leadership Group on January 15 at the high school’s media center.  The purpose of the initiative is to develop a program of requirements, curriculum, incentives and an outreach program, which might lead to a certification for students in the STEM field.  A large number of students in the Seneca area end up working in STEM fields within the county and the leadership team feel that this initiative will help prepare the students to be successful in the field.  Attending members of the leadership team included post-secondary education representatives from Tri-County Technical College and Clemson University; community representatives from Schneider Electric, Integrated Support Systems, BASF and Oconee Medical Center; a STEM student from Seneca High and local educators including area principals and STEM teachers from Seneca High School.  The group met on January 15 with the explicit purpose of developing an action plan for this program, which will be implemented over the next few school years.  Seneca High School Principal Cliff Roberts said, “Seneca High is very excited about the opportunity to work so closely with local industry, health care, technical colleges, and universities. With the paradigm shift that we are experiencing with a renewed focus on college and career readiness, this group creates a unique opportunity. Our goal is to become one of the top STEM schools in the state. With this partnership, we are able to say to local industry, ‘what does the career ready student look like to you? Provide us with a model of the candidates that you are prepared to hire.’ In turn, the folks in business, health services, and industry then have the opportunity to help us design the curriculum for the STEM certification. The partnership works very similar with colleges and universities as it applies to college bound students. A large majority of the jobs in our county fall under industry, health services, and education. This STEM initiative provides us an opportunity to not only prepare our students in these areas, it also provides valuable input for the potential employers/ schools in the programs design.” The group will meet again in the near future to begin developing the requirements for a STEM certification for students.  Any local business or industry personnel, who are interested in being involved with this initiative, please contact Chris White at [email protected].