Excellence in science, technology, engineering and mathematics has fueled American innovation for more than 50 years. But serious questions are being raised about our future competitiveness in these areas. U.S. grade-school students continue to underachieve in math and science, and a lower percentage of them go on to pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in these disciplines than at any time over the last five decades.
To discuss solutions and foster collaborations, STEM Summit 2010 — an invitation-only event funded by the Samueli Foundation — will bring together national leaders to explore innovative approaches and research in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education. The sessions will address the continuum of STEM teaching and learning, from early childhood to higher education, including the challenges faced by students with limited English proficiency or from low-income families.
The conference will engage renowned researchers, policymakers, educators and funding agencies, with the goal of raising awareness and encouraging the further development and dissemination of educational initiatives in STEM subjects. Activities will include a visit to the Discovery Science Center in Santa Ana, facilitated by Michael Ruane, executive director of the Children and Families Commission of Orange County.
Among the scheduled speakers are UC Irvine Chancellor Michael Drake; Henry Samueli, co-founder of Broadcom Corp.; Rafael Bras, Distinguished Professor and dean of UCI’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering; Deborah Lowe Vandell, professor and chair of education at UCI; UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau; UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi; Harvey Mudd College President Maria Klawe; and Michael Feuer, executive director of the National Research Council’s Division of Behavioral & Social Sciences & Education. Paul Tough, former New York Times reporter and author of Whatever It Takes: Geoffrey Canada’s Quest to Change Harlem & America, will be the keynote speaker.
Hosted by the National Academy of Engineering, STEM Summit 2010 is sponsored by the Samueli Foundation, UCI and the Children & Families Commission of Orange County. For more information, see www.samueli.org.
Arnold & Mabel Beckman Center of the National Academies of Sciences & Engineering, 100 Academy Way, Irvine.