Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math
The Acronym STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, and many of our initiatives at STREAMWORKS revolve around these principles. So, why is STEM so important? In the last decade, the demand for STEM jobs has increased significantly. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S.A. will need approximately one million more STEM professionals than the U.S.A. will produce over the next decade if we want to keep our preeminence in science and technology. The United States is in a STEM career deficit. STREAMWORKS wants to help fill this gap by instilling a love for STEM in our youth. Our mission is to prepare them for future jobs in the STEM fields. In addition, another one of our initiatives is our Women in STEM initiative. We acknowledge the gender gap concerning the number of men and women in STEM fields and want to inspire young women to pursue these careers.
It is hard to believe that 2.4 million STEM jobs will go unfilled when the rate of STEM jobs grew three times the rate of non-STEM jobs from 2000 to 2010. Despite the need for jobs in math and science, 78% of high school graduates did not meet the readiness benchmark requirements for mathematics and science. On top of that, 22 countries beat the U.S. in student performance in mathematics and 16 countries’ students outperformed us in science. Students are obviously having difficulty understanding math and science concepts, and STREAMWORKS believes that hand-on learning will be the key in making this connection.
One of the most beneficial activities to take part in, if you are wanting to go into a STEM career, is to be a part of a robotics team. At STREAMWORKS, we offer two different robotics programs: MATE underwater robotics and Robot Drone League. In both initiatives, teams work together to develop a robot in order to solve real-world problems. Last year’s MATE competition revolved around repairing a dam and helping solve the plastic waste issues in our waterways. This year’s RDL competition revolves around NASA’s dragonfly mission. Teams are challenged to create a rover that will collect samples and explore Titan’s vast and challenging terrain. We challenge the minds of our youth in order to develop the problem-solving skills they will use in future careers. The competition aspect of our programs inspires students and teaches them communication, responsibility, and leadership skills. You can learn more about each of our robotics programs by clicking here or on the Programs tab above, or you can learn more about the impact of robotics on students by clicking here or on the Robotics tab above.
Robotics Summer Camps
STREAMWORKS also offers robotics summer camps in order to extend a student’s education from the classroom. Summer camps focus on different skills students will need for future careers through hands-on activities and instruction. Camps will focus on the fundamentals of both science and robotics, and will be offered to elementary, middle, and high school students. We implement elements of physics, chemistry, and biology with electricity, mechanics, and programming to establish the connections between the classroom and the real world.
Each week has a theme and an ultimate project for the campers to solve. Fridays are usually competition days, as STREAMWORKS believes that having a competition component in our programs is highly important in the development of character. Attending these camps also allows campers to meet others with similar interests to them. If one is interested in robotics, these week-long camps are a great way to obtain the essential skills needed for future careers. Some of the past camps included CAD camps, Space Camps, Coding camps, Underwater robotics camps, Robot Drone League camps, Drone camps, Lego Jr. Camps, Lego Sumo camps, and so much more.
We want to expose kids to a wide variety of subjects, in order to allow them to experiment and find what career they want to pursue. The goal of our summer camps is to inspire the youth of our community to pursue a STEM career and allow them to experiment with what STEM career they wish to pursue.
Not only is it important to educate our students, but it is also important to educate our teachers. Our goal is to revolutionize education by showing teachers how to better prepare their students for life outside of their schooling through hands-on learning and STEM activities. STREAMWORKS aims to achieve this goal by providing teacher workshops. We hope teachers will take what they learn from these workshops and apply them in the classroom. The workshops will cover multiple STEM topics, including lessons for teachers interested in mentoring a robotics team. More information about workshops will be made available soon.
STEM crisis or STEM surplus? Yes and yes : Monthly Labor Review. (2015, May 01). Retrieved September 12, 2020, from https://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2015/article/stem-crisis-or-stem-surplus-yes-and-yes.htm
The STEM Imperative. (2016, March 25). Retrieved September 12, 2020, from
Article Written By: Makaila Freeman