The Pennsylvania Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Ambassador opportunity is a strategic way to achieve state STEM/workforce policy goals. Ambassadors advance policy goals through outreach, education, targeted relationships with policymakers and building a coalition of local and regional support. STEM Ambassadors are leaders within their organizations, interested and committed to sharing their experiences and content knowledge with influential stakeholders. They also serve as role models to inspire and encourage youth to pursue opportunities for STEM exploration in both formal and informal learning environments.
Pennsylvania’s response to the challenges of the 21st century will be determined by opportunities put forth in STEM education and information technology. Positive change in the quality of our workforce is dependent upon quality STEM education, exposure, and experiences. Partnerships with businesses, schools, community organizations, and government are very important for STEM education and vital for economic development and quality job growth in Pennsylvania. The creation of the STEM Ambassador program would serve to train interested and experienced individuals to proactively engage with state agencies, policymakers, business/industry leaders, education entities and/or community providers to share data, experiences, networks and policy needs. The 2018 STEM Ambassadors supported successful advocacy efforts in the $30 million state STEM/workforce investment known as PAsmart.
You are encouraged to apply if you have:
- A commitment to personal and professional development and leadership growth
- A track record of making things happen – inside and across agencies/organizations
- A strong work ethic and considered a high performer in a professional role
- Interest/experience in STEM through workforce, education, and/or informal learning environments
- A desire to shape Pennsylvania policy through targeted relationships with elected officials and media
- The endorsement of your employing organization/sponsor
- Financial support/fundraising capability for associated program costs
- Employees who are ready to assume more leadership responsibilities
- Expanded networks that enhance the organization’s ability to access key leaders and decision makers
- Recognition at statewide events, such as PSAYDN’s Annual meeting and Harrisburg Advocacy Day
- Access to state and national STEM education leaders
- Ability to help shape state and/or federal STEM policy
- Employee enhancement of communications skills
- Increased access to regional, state and national STEM experts
- Contribute to the future of the STEM policy in Pennsylvania
- Network with national, state and local leaders
- Learn from state and national experts in the field on workforce needs, STEM Learning Ecosystems, federal and state education policy, and computer science/coding initiatives
- Sharpen public speaking and presentation skills
- Develop exceptional leadership skills
- Be part of a supportive network of peers and provided peer mentors through the training process
- One-day training in Harrisburg, late February/early March 2019
- Quarterly webinars/workshops on the following core areas:
- Computer science/coding
- Workforce/career pathways
- STEM education policy (federal and state levels)
- Partnerships in the informal and formal STEM learning ecosystems
- Peer network community to share progress/challenges
- Participation in state and/or regional STEM-related advocacy events
- Workshop participation at statewide STEM conferences (i.e., STEMathon, STEM Summit)
- Policy project based upon knowledge learned
- Assignment of STEM peer mentor to assist with project
- Connections through Ambassador emeritus activities
- Commit to 10-month leadership/policy training
- Participate in a full-day face-to-face training in Harrisburg in late February/early March 2019.
- Attend a minimum of four virtual webinars (every other month) through November 2019.
- Share your experience and knowledge with other STEM Ambassadors through presentations, discussion, progress reports, and a policy project.
- Attend a minimum of two legislative meetings either in the Ambassador’s district and/or in Harrisburg.
- Conduct independent study and research to expand on core policy issues explored in the program.
- Participate in the 2019 spring Advocacy Day event and/or STEM conferences, as schedule allows.
- The 2019 STEM Ambassador program has an annual fee of $900 to assist with program-related costs. It is also the responsibility of the Ambassador or sponsoring organization to cover any travel costs associated with the STEM
- Ambassador Training and other endorsed events. The minimum required travel is a one-day training in Harrisburg, Pa.
- The $900 program fee may be paid for by the STEM Ambassador, employer and or any public/private sponsoring individual/organization.
- If the program fee is a hindrance to applying, please contact Laura Saccente for sponsorship letter templates and fundraising tips to ensure a successful sponsorship.
- Program fee of $900 will be due after acceptance into the program, no later than February 18, 2019.