For Immediate Release - October 18, 2012

$780,000 IN FUNDING TO PROMOTE AND ADVANCE STEM EDUCATION, JOBS, AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Lieutenant Governor Murray outlines initiatives at the state’s 9th Annual STEM Summit

FOXBOROUGH – Thursday, October 18, 2012 – Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray announced $780,000 in funding to promote and advance Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education, jobs, and workforce development as he welcomed over 1,000 educators, business leaders, and government officials to the 9th Annual STEM Summit at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough. 

“Over the years, Governor Patrick and I have worked closely with organizations in academia, the private and non-profit sector, and government to emphasize the need to increase student interest in STEM education,” said Lieutenant Governor Murray, Chair of the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council. “Today’s announced funding and the efforts and feedback from the engaged audience at today’s summit will build on this foundation to further prepare a talented pipeline of students who will be ready to apply 21st century skills in the state’s workforce and compete in our global economy.”

Building on his rollout of the AMP it up! campaign launched last month, Lieutenant Governor Murray today announced MassDevelopment will provide up to $10,000 in matching grants to eligible organizations that will create innovative programs focused on educating students and the adults in their lives about advanced manufacturing careers, which require many STEM-related skills. Starting today, MassDevelopment is accepting applications for these matching grants. After the grants are awarded, MassDevelopment will work with the recipients on community-based programs and activities to dispel common misconceptions about manufacturing and bolster the prospective employee base for these quality jobs. AMP it up! complements the state’s continued effort led by the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council to promote STEM education, jobs, and workforce development across the Commonwealth.   

“Manufacturing jobs in Massachusetts today require workers with advanced, technology-based skills,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones. “The matching grants funded by MassDevelopment, the programs they engender via the AMP it up! Campaign, and students schooled in STEM will enable manufacturing companies in the Commonwealth to expand as their pool of skilled workers deepens.”

“Our advanced manufacturing industry is in a stronger position for growth than it was five years ago, but continues to need new, well-trained talent ready for the next generation of innovative manufacturing in Massachusetts,” said Greg Bialecki, Secretary of Housing and Economic Development. “Amp it up! will help highlight the great, long-term job and career opportunities in manufacturing, and help connect young adults with companies seeking new employees.”

Additionally, Lieutenant Governor Murray announced $130,000 through the state’s STEM Pipeline Fund to build on past programs and develop new messaging and communication to reach more students, parents, educators, and businesses on the value and importance of STEM education, jobs, and workforce development. For example, last year the WOW Initiative was launched as a statewide public awareness campaign designed to engage, educate and “wow” Massachusetts students into realizing the opportunities in STEM. STEM professionals with Massachusetts roots have visited schools to speak to students and are featured in videos which have been distributed to schools across the state aimed at encouraging students to pursue careers in STEM.  

To advance STEM initiatives across the state, Lieutenant Governor Murray today also announced $650,000 in additional state funding to expand a program known as the @Scale Initiative. The @Scale Initiative endorses statewide STEM projects and expands them across the state to reach more students and teachers. Phase I of @Scale projects were approved by the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council in 2011 with the support of the business community to “scale-up” projects by requiring a match of public funds with private funds on a target ratio of $1:$3 public to private. Since 2011, the STEM Advisory Council and business community have been working with the following projects: Quinsigamond Community College's (QCC) Advanced Robotics Program; Mass Insight Education's Math + Science Initiative; DIGITS Project; WPI's Project Lead the Way; MassBioEd Foundation's BioTeach; Massasoit Community College's Science Transfer Initiative; and the Museum of Science’s Gateway Project.

Phase I of @Scale included each project investing in efforts to achieve quantitative gains in student interest and readiness as outlined in the state’s first ever STEM Plan in 2010. With both state and private sector funding, Phase I @Scale projects will reach at least 150 teachers and 8,270 students across the state. Now, with today’s announced funding of $650,000, Phases II, II, and IV will soon move forward in collaboration with the business community.

“Employers are investing in STEM as a business imperative. They are championing innovative programs and supporting the implementation of the nationally renowned STEM Plan to keep the Commonwealth competitive in the global economy, ” 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. “Lieutenant Governor Murray’s leadership and collaboration with the Roundtable and employers in general are making Massachusetts a national leader in STEM education.”

Phase II of @Scale will include $400,000 in state funding for the next round of @Scale projects that will be approved this winter. Projects in Phase II of @Scale will focus on workforce development and STEM retention amongst college graduates, Goals 4 and 6 of the state’s STEM Plan and will require a $1.2 million private sector match. The additional $250,000 in state funding will support Phase III and Phase IV of @Scale projects that will be approved in early 2013, and will require a $750,000 private sector match. To address Goals 2 and 5 of the state’s STEM Plan, Phase III will focus on Science Inquiry and Applied Mathematics and address Student Academic Achievement and Educator Effectiveness. To address Goals 1 and 5 of the state’s STEM Plan, Phase IV will focus on Pre-K, Elementary and Out-of-School programs addressing Student Interest and Educator Effectiveness.

The Patrick-Murray Administration and the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council continues to partner with the state’s leading research, technology, and education organizations, including the co-host of today’s summit the UMass Donahue Institute, to promote and advance STEM initiatives statewide. 

“Educating the workforce of the future and developing the talent needed to grow the innovation economy is at the heart of what we do at the University of Massachusetts,” said UMass Board Chair Henry Thomas, President and CEO of the Urban League of Springfield. “And such work is best done in collaboration with partners such as those involved in our latest STEM initiative, ABLE 4 STEM, which includes the 15 community colleges across our Commonwealth. We are proud that this effort will work to double the number of underrepresented minorities who earn associates and bachelor’s degrees in STEM fields.”

The 9th Annual STEM Summit is held today at Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots. Through the work of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation, STEM programming such as the annual Science of Sports Fair at Gillette Stadium take place each year.

“An investment in education will pay dividends for generations to come,” said Robert Kraft, Chairman and CEO of The Kraft Group. “I applaud the Patrick Administration and the work of Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray for the emphasis they have placed on improving our statewide education K through 12, specifically in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The STEM fields are essential to our growth if we want to remain competitive in today’s global economy and we are proud to host the STEM Summit at Gillette Stadium this year. Four years ago, we teamed up with Raytheon to create a math and science curriculum around the Patriots’ Hall of Fame and have had over 60,000 students participate. As an extension of that relationship, the Patriots Charitable Foundation and Raytheon now host an annual Science of Sport science fair. Through that program, Raytheon employees mentor students at the Boys & Girls Clubs on sports-themed math and science projects. Together, they create some amazing projects and are hopefully inspiring a new generation of STEM students.”

Massachusetts is recognized as a national leader in STEM education, and the state has invested heavily in programs and initiatives to develop a highly skilled workforce, foster economic development, and ultimately position the Commonwealth as a leader in the 21st century innovation-based global economy. Hosted by the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council, the Massachusetts Business Roundtable, and the UMass Donahue Institute, the summit includes 27 break-out sessions with panels, workshops, seminars and discussions that address issues such as curriculum planning, academic engagement, college readiness, career pathways, underrepresented populations, and analysis of the state’s STEM progress. As the longest running STEM Summit in the country, the Massachusetts Annual STEM Summit has grown over the years from a gathering of 250 in 2004 to over 1,000 attendees today.

About AMP it up! and MassDevelopment

MassDevelopment is now accepting applications from eligible organizations to participate in its AMP it up! Campaign. Eligible applicants must be Massachusetts-based nonprofit organizations, education and workforce organizations or institutions that work with students between the ages of 10 and 19. The application deadline is November 15, and grant awards will be made around December 15. The application is now available on www.ampitupma.com.

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2012, MassDevelopment financed or managed nearly 300 projects generating investment of $3.3 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create almost 12,000 jobs and build or rehabilitate more than 750 residential units.

Governor’s STEM Advisory Council

On October 14, 2009 Governor Patrick signed an Executive Order creating the Governor's STEM Advisory Council. As Chair of the STEM Advisory Council, Lieutenant Governor Murray released the state’s first STEM plan at the STEM Summit in 2010, tying economic development to educational enhancement in STEM fields. The plan established targeted goals and benchmarks to promote STEM education, jobs, and workforce development as part of the Patrick-Murray Administration’s STEM Initiative.

The Council serves as a vehicle for STEM advocates from the public and private sectors, as well as legislators and educators, to engage in meaningful collaboration with the Governor and Lieutenant Governor’s Office, the Executive Office of Education and their agencies, the Department of Higher Education, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, and the Department of Early Education and Care, the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, and the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

To read the STEM Plan or learn more about the Patrick-Murray Administration’s STEM Initiatives and the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council, visit www.mass.gov/governor/stem.

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