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STEM skills are in demand

Students in the state of Texas are not receiving the skills they need to stay competitive when it comes to finding a STEM related job. The students that lack the most proficiency in math and science are minorities. In 2013, 53% of Caucasian students in Texas that were in the 8th grade had proficiency in math compared to 21% by African American students and 29% by Hispanic students. By providing a strong foundation in math and science we can ensure that they are ready for college-level courses so that they can be successful in STEM related fields.  STEM jobs in Texas have continued to be in high demand.

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Source: http://vitalsigns.changetheequation.org/#tx-Texas-Overview

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The White House Honor’s Dr. Flowers

 

C-STEM Founder and CEO  Dr. Reagan Flowers Among 
The White House STEM Access Champion of Change Honorees 
 
On Wednesday, February 26, 2014, C-STEM Teacher and Support Services, Inc. Founder and CEO, Dr. Reagan Flowers was recognized as one of the 2014 White House STEM Access Champions of Change Honorees. The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals, businesses, and organizations doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals, businesses, and organizations doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities.
Dr. Reagan Flowers began her education career as a high school science teacher and has since remained dedicated to her calling as a leader in academia.  Dr. Flowers’ experience caused her to take up the mission of closing the academic achievement gap through the founding of C-STEM Teacher and Student Support Services, Inc.  In 2002, Dr. Flowers created the nation’s first integrated STEM enrichment program for Pre K through 12th grade.  For 12 years, Dr. Flowers, has been implementing integrated STEM best practices into classrooms internationally.  Dr. Flowers founded C-STEM using her personal resources and has led the organization in unprecedented expansion of services and revenue growth.  The organization has impacted more than 100,000 students, and its revenue over the years has grown from $5,000 to nearly $5 Million.
  “I am honored and humbled to receive such a prestigious award for the work we have done with STEM locally and throughout the country,” said Dr. Flowers.  “This honor is beyond anything I could have imagined especially since we started doing our initial work with CSTEM in the janitor space at a middle school in Houston.  CSTEM is a program that has grown from 20 students to nearly 100,000 students, and we are proud to be recognized at such a prestigious level for our accomplishments.”
Students from C-STEM supported schools compete annually in the National C-STEM Challenge; a competition designed to create the next generation of innovators and thought leaders by engaging Pre K-12th grade students in exciting hands-on projects solving real world problems.  C-STEM encourages entry into STEM talent pipelines using relevant 21st Century projects such as robotics, 3-D printing, programming, geoscience, sculpture, mural, film making, and photography.The CSTEM Challenge integrates communication, science, technology, engineering and mathematics (CSTEM) with the disciplines of social studies and art surrounding the central theme: Everyone is an Artist and an Engineer.

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My passion and drive for helping children learn and succeed runs deep.  As a child I failed the second grade and was, unfortunately, labeled a slow learner.  Since education wasn’t reinforced in my broken home I was simply promoted from one grade level to the next one without acquiring basic skills.  Subsequently, I was moved to a small town in Mississippi and attended a rural school where, for the first time, teachers invested in me personally and made me feel like I could achieve.  I was a fifth grader when I started that school, but I’d never learned to multiply.  With the support and guidance of several caring teachers I began to thrive as a student, and during my sixth grade school year I’d made the honor roll and was even becoming a math wiz!  Thus, my calling to help other children rise above their challenges began.

I started my career as a science teacher at Jack Yates High School in Houston, Texas.  In an effort to give my students hands-on experiences with real world problems, I enrolled them in a national robotics competition. Those students, who were of mixed performance levels on campus, had no prior robotics experience nor had they been placed in such a competitive environment. My students were initially intimidated and doubtful about the competition.  However, the group outperformed everyone’s expectations. While their performance in the competition was encouraging, it was also very humbling because I saw first-hand the stark reality of the vast academic achievement gap between my students and their peers from other schools. This experience caused me to take up a new mission: closing the academic achievement gap.

In 2002, I founded C-STEM (Communication-Science-Technology-Engineering-Mathematics) Teacher & Student Support Services, Inc, the first integrated Pre K through 12th grade STEM enrichment program in the nation.  The distinguishing factors of C-STEM Pedagogy and research model include: integrating communications (literacy) in STEM to ensure students can read, comprehend, write, and articulate solutions to math and science problems; implementing a curriculum influenced by STEM industries; developing a unique collaborative model that creates Pre K -12th grade pipelines; supporting interdisciplinary teacher teams through training and supplemental workshops; providing schools with innovative STEM instructional tools and resources; and developing competitive environments that support high performance and accountability for both teachers and students. In implementing C-STEM I have found teachers to be more effective in the classroom with connecting state approved curriculum to the real-world, which allows students to think critically and problem-solve.  I find that C-STEM students are particularly drawn to the program because it helps them understand how STEM applies to their life and the world

It is imperative that our schools remain leading authorities in STEM education worldwide.  To accomplish this, educators must have adequate training, funding, and partnerships that aid in their development and leadership.  This enables teachers to continue to inspire innovation, creativity, and exploration with their students.  In my efforts I’ve also recognized that economic development in STEM is instrumental to future innovations.  This is why my STEM approach provides support and services aimed at creating and sustaining STEM learning environments that are inclusive, equitable and level the playing field for the underserved and underrepresented.  Children cannot dream or become that which they have not been exposed to, which is why opportunities provided by C-STEM create unlimited possibilities in communities across the United States.

Since founding C-STEM Teacher and Student Support Services, Inc. in 2002, the organization has grown from 20 students working out of the janitor’s workspace in a school building to impacting over 100,000 students. I have great success stories of students impacted by C-STEM that have completed college, are currently working as STEM professionals, volunteer with C-STEM, train teachers, mentor students and donate to support the organization that supported them.  Their success and my triumph is proof that every student has potential and promise. At C-STEM, “Everyone is an Artist and an Engineer”.

Visit The White House Champion of Change Website

Brookings STEM Report

STEM Cell Economy Humor

 

The Brookings STEM Report offers an analysis of the occupational requirements for STEM knowledge.  How does “The Hidden STEM Economy” impact you?

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Prairie View A & M University of Texas Celebrates Women’s History Month

Thursday, 11:00 AM, March 7th at the John B. Coleman Library at Prairie View A & M University of Texas celebrates Women’s History Month:  “Women Inspiring Innovation Through Imagination: Celebrating Women in (STEM).”

Women’s History Month Flyer 2013 Dr.pdf FINAL COPYkmg 3-4-13

Saturdays Should Be Declared Permanent National Days Of Service

For schools to achieve desired outcomes with student achievement in America, it will require hard working American adults doing their part. Every Saturday of the year is a great day for Americans to take time out and volunteer for STEM learning projects at elementary, middle, and high schools.

VolunteerFact-300x293Real world experiences are vital to a student’s understanding of how to apply textbook content towards solving problems. When businesses engage in focused STEM opportunities, through community service projects that give back to classrooms, students, and teachers, they are in fact enhancing learning and enriching lives such that entire communities and economies are transformed.

CSTEM volunteers are appreciated and valued for their drive and understanding of the importance of giving back.  The most powerful thing about CSTEM volunteers is their service and investment of time, through which they convey knowledge and skills to teachers and students alike that they will hopefully always carry with them. It is in this spirit that we offer that Saturdays ought to be permanently recognized as the American Day of Service.