Every Monday is a College Monday around BHHS. We like it that way. Why? Well first we get to look no further than our favorite college t-shirt or sweatshirt to rock at school (Mondays can be rough, a set “uniform” of comfortability makes them easier!)…second, we get to give a little workshop! While we covered Visual and Performing Arts a couple weeks ago, today we steam rolled through STEM…or should I say STEM-rolled 😉 So let’s dive into a little recap. (FYI, original PPT can be downloaded on the Resource page).
- What? Science, Technology, Engineering and Math
- Why? “[Science] is more than a school subject, or the periodic table, or the properties of waves. It is an approach to the world, a critical way to understand and explore and engage with the world, and then have the capacity to change that world…”— President Barack Obama, March 23, 2015 (Source: https://www.ed.gov/Stem)
- Who? YOU
There is a NEED in the STEM fields. Be inspired, be driven, take those spots!! According to U.S. Department of Education, there aren’t enough STEM programs preparing our students. Nationwide, only 50% of high schools offer calculus, and only 63% offer physics.
If you’re lucky to be placed in a high school with access to these courses and extra programs TAKE ADVANTAGE! If you don’t, bring a little initiative. Is there a computer science or tech club on campus? Local community college campus where you can take a Calc or Physics course? Get creative, think outside the box and explore STEM early on. You’ll not only discover a field you can “geek” out to, but you just might so happen to build a pretty nice looking resume in the process (think setting yourself up for internships, college apps and scholarship $$$).
Exploring majors and careers
- Explore a massive list of STEM Majors here
- Purdue University has a really fun career search tool that incorporates personality and interests into the type of STEM career you’ll strive in…takes about 5 minutes to complete: What kind of STEM career should you go into?
- Naviance: Explore career clusters, search majors and search colleges
What can you do now?
- Explore opportunities in and outside of your school environment
- Keep a Resume and include
- Description of activity
- Dates with average hours/week
- Keep a journal or at least some notes Helps you when you complete college applications. One experience might turn into your college essay!
- Example: UC’s prompt “Describe your favorite academic subject and explain how it has influenced you.” Reflect in your notes and resume of your past experiences and utilize those in writing your college essays and applications your Senior year.
STEM programs in college
In my presentation I put a FEW examples of different STEM programs available. I’ll put a small sample below from the liberal arts section. But remember, there are thousands of colleges! Do your research and find what your values and wants are in a college. Use college searches online and guidebooks and I encourage you to explore the many accessible and powerful STEM college programs.
Colorado College, CO Unique Block Plan, take one class at a time for an intense 3.5 weeks, over 100 clubs just in STEM and majors from astrophysics to computer science
Harvey Mudd, CA Liberal arts approach to STEM. Computer Science and Math joint major as well as math and computation biology (with a caps
tone within a Clinical Program, students work with corporations, national laboratories and agencies)
Sarah Lawrence University, NY Experiential learning, study on trails of Adirondacks, streets of NYC or in 21 countries
Albion College, MI Rigorous academics, joint math/physics degree, named by Forbes as one of nation’s best colleges for helping women succeed in STEM
George Fox University, OR Largest majors include nursing, biology and engineering, popular STEM majors include cognitive science, information systems, mechanical engineering and pre-med “Honor Roll for Character-Building Colleges”
Worcester Polytechnic Institute, MI One of most respected colleges for STEM in Nation. Breakthroughs in biotech, fuel cells, nanotechnology and information security. Anything from working on cleaner water, advanced aircraft, robotics and video games, you can do it here!
U.S. Department of Labor that even though there will be an estimated 1.2 million job openings in STEM-related fields by the year 2018, there may not bee enough graduates to fill the roles. Research colleges that will set you up with not only a degree, but experience and a resume ready for those jobs!