CHARLESTON, W.Va. - State Schools Superintendent Michael Martirano today announced the receipt of funding from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation that will be used to create a youth STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) web portal for West Virginia. The $120,000 in funding will be used for the development and implementation of a “one-stop shop” of youth STEM programs, activities and resources in the Mountain State.
The West Virginia Youth STEM Portal, will serve as a statewide clearinghouse to provide resources such as information on youth STEM clubs, contests, summer camps, lesson plans, research, multimedia, and internship opportunities. West Virginia students, parents, educators, community members, and business leaders will be able to learn about and access the resources available through this on-line site. Examples of existing West Virginia youth STEM programs include science fairs, math contests, robotics tournaments, space and rocketry clubs, 3-D printing seminars, computer science learning as well as Project Lead the Way and SkillsUSA.
“As we all know, quality STEM education and programs are of vital importance for our young people, and I am excited that this statewide web portal will provide our students, parents, educators, and community members with convenient ways to search for and access STEM information” said Dr. Michael Martirano.
“It is wonderful that the Benedum Foundation has provided this grant, and we are excited that this site should help engage more students, educators, parents and citizens in STEM programs, contests and activities. This will help support and encourage our students to explore and participate in STEM both inside and outside of the classroom. The portal will also will provide us with a tool to implement and evaluate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) initiatives and educational opportunities for all students Pre-K-12.”
This project is one of the key recommendations of the Governor’s STEM Council, which issued its report in November 2015. The West Virginia Department of Education will oversee the development, hosting and maintenance of the web portal and clearinghouse database. It is expected to be completed and on-line by the end of this year. The Governor’s STEM Council will provide input and support for the development and implementation.
This project is a part of a joint initiative of the W.Va. Department of Education and Governor Tomblin’s STEM Initiative, in partnership with the W.Va. Department of Education and the W.Va. Department of Education and the Arts, to advance STEM interest and learning among young people across West Virginia.
For more information, contact the West Virginia Department of Education Communications Office at 304-558-2699.