STEM Learning Ecosystems selects East Central Ohio STEM collaborative to Join National Initiative

STEM Funders Network to support STEM Works East Central Ohio in collaborations that impact youth from preschool through college and engage students during and after school

San Diego, CA  – The newly-formed STEM Works East Central Ohio (ECO) has just been selected to join the STEM Learning Ecosystems national initiative to make a significant impact on STEM education and workforce development. As announced at the U.S. News STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference today, STEM Works ECO is one of 17 regional Ecosystems added to the national Initiative, which now encompasses 54 communities.

In just two years, the STEM Learning Ecosystems Initiative has become a thriving network of hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals, joined in regional partnerships with the objective of collaborating in new and creative ways to increase equity, quality and STEM learning outcomes for all youth.

“It’s so important to consider the entire continuum of education,” said STEM Learning Ecosystem co-chairs Gerald Solomon, Executive Director, Samueli Foundation, and Ron Ottinger, Director of STEM Next. “The growing Community of Practice shares ideas and best practices for innovative learning that will benefit students’ individual development and prepare them for the demands of the 21st century workforce.”

STEM Works ECO was selected to be one of 17 incoming ecosystem communities because of a demonstrated commitment to cross-sector collaborations in schools and beyond the classroom—in afterschool and summer programs, at home, with local business and industry partners, and in science centers, libraries and other places both virtual and physical. As STEM Ecosystems evolve, students will be able to connect what is learned in and out of school with real-world opportunities.

“It makes sense to collaborate with like-minded organizations, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy,” said Meghan Federer, STEM Director at The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art and Technology and Lead of STEM Works ECO. “STEM Ecosystems provides technical assistance and infrastructure support so that we can tailor quality STEM learning opportunities to our specific needs in East Central Ohio while leveraging the experience of similar alliances across the country.” Federer is currently representing STEM Works ECO at the U.S. News STEM Solutions Conference in San Diego, Calif.

STEM Works ECO is an emerging initiative championed by The Works: Ohio Center for History,
Art and Technology, The Works’ STEM Advisory Council, and public-private partnerships. Representatives from diverse stakeholder groups support STEM Works ECO, including government, private industry, the philanthropic sector, preK-12 education, postsecondary education, career-technical education, the nonprofit sector, and families. Shared goals include addressing the STEM skills gap and improving access to relevant STEM education for careers across the region.

Partners of the new STEM Works ECO include: The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art and Technology, Battelle, HeathNewark-Licking County Port Authority, Newark City Schools, Licking County Library System, Licking County Foundation, The Ohio State University at Newark, Central Ohio Technical College, Denison University, Career and Technology Education Centers of Licking County, and Dawes Arboretum.

The following ecosystem communities were selected to become part of the national STEM Learning Ecosystem:

  • Arizona: Flagstaff STEM Learning Ecosystem
  • California: Region 5 STEAM in Expanded Learning Ecosystem (San Benito, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Monterey Counties)
  • Louisiana: Baton Rouge STEM Learning Network
  • Massachusetts: Cape Cod Regional STEM Network
  • Michigan: Michigan STEM Partnership / Southeast Michigan STEM Alliance
  • Missouri: Louis Regional STEM Learning Ecosystem
  • New Jersey: Delran STEM Ecosystem Alliance (Burlington County)
  • New Jersey: Newark STEAM Coalition
  • New York: WNY STEM (Western New York State)
  • New York: North Country STEM Network (seven counties of Northern New York State)
  • Ohio: Belmont County Ohio STEM Initiative
  • Ohio: STEM Works East Central Ohio
  • Oklahoma: Mayes County STEM Alliance
  • Pennsylvania: Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery STEM Learning Ecosystem
  • Washington: The Washington STEM Network
  • Wisconsin: Greater Green Bay STEM Network
  • Canada: Symbiosis, British Columbia, Canada

Learn more about the national initiative at stemecosystems.org. Address specific questions to info@stemecosystems.org. Join online conversations on Twitter @STEMecosystems and #STEMecosystems and on Facebook.

About the STEM Funders Network: The STEM Funders Network brings together grantmakers working in STEM to learn from one another, leverage their collective resources and collaborate on high-impact projects they could not undertake alone. The vision of the STEM Funders Network is that all students should have equal opportunity to engage in high-quality STEM learning experiences that will enhance their ability to succeed in a STEM career or other chosen path. See http://www.stemfundersnetwork.org

STEM Ecosystems funding and local supporting members of the STEM Funders Network include: Amgen Foundation, Broadcom Foundation, Burroughs Wellcome Fund, Carnegie Corporation of New York, KDK-Harman Foundation, Motorola Solutions FoundationOverdeck Family Foundation, Pinkerton Foundation, Samueli Foundation, Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, Simons Foundation, Steinman Foundation, STEM Next (Supported by the Noyce Foundation), and Tiger Woods Foundation.

For more information, please contact info@stemecosystems.org.