City Social Magazine

MAR-APR 2017

City Social Magazine in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

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Page 30 of 59

31 The ExxonMobil BR STEM Learning (Network) has a bold goal for Baton Rouge: to increase the number of students graduating from high school pos- sessing requisite STEM—science, technology, engineering and math—skills to be college ready and able to compete in the 21st century workplace. ExxonMobil and others are leading a manufacturing renaissance on the Gulf Coast; this rapid growth will require tens of thousands of trained workers for construction and operations. Highly paid, STEM-related jobs in the petrochemical industry are quality jobs, but there aren't enough qualified workers to fill the openings there and elsewhere—creating a wonderful opportunity for new graduates in many industries. Facilitated by the Foundation for East Baton Rouge School System (FEBRSS) and funded by a $100,000 grant from ExxonMobil, the purpose of the Network is to build a comprehensive pathway for all pre-K through 12 th grade students and teachers to be involved in STEM learning. The first phase of the Network has already begun. In February, a cross-sector of community stakehold- ers came together to explore strategic and creative ways to engage students. The Network has already offered small-scale funding awards and is providing a platform for educators and partners to continue share the best practices. Subsequent phases include problem-solving to reduce barriers for students, professional development for educators, the coordination of in- and out-of-school learning, and alignment between STEM learning and the changing needs of higher education and the workforce. "This partnership will provide students—our future leaders—with stronger skills that are critical to the jobs of today and tomorrow", says ExxonMobil Baton Rouge Area Engineering Services Manager Ken Miller. STEM is more than an acronym; it's a philosophy for teaching that features a rich array of learning experiences coupled with real-world, problem-based learning, and it requires a public-private approach to edu- cation. FEBRSS Executive Director Keila Stovall views this as a great opportunity to harness local STEM resources to help open doors for all Baton Rouge children and she needs community input. Contact her at to help develop a dynamic action plan for EBR schools. Education and Industry Unite to Prepare EBR Students East Baton Rouge school teachers attend a hands-on workshop on engineering design, maker spaces, robotics and more in order to incorporate more innovative STEM activities into their classrooms. ExxonMobil environmental advisors Tegan Treadaway and George Jones follow the irrigation demonstration given by Scotlandville Magnet High School students Javian Pierson, Nyzeik McKeel and Elvis Richard following the announcement of the $100,000 STEM Learning Network grant by ExxonMobil. Community stakeholders meet to map out a plan for STEM education in East Baton Rouge schools. Pictured are Knock Knock Children's Museum Education Chair Cate Heroman, ExxonMobil Public and Government Affairs Manager Stephanie Cargile, BESE District 8 Representative Jada Lewis and FEBRSS Executive Director Keila Stovall. A Scotlandville Pre-Engineering Magnet Academy student participates in a STEM activity with Mayor Sharon Weston Broome and EBR Parish School Board Superintendent Warren Drake.

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