Teresa Pierrie: When we say we want students to be college and career ready, what does that really look like? How do we help young people understand that those really good jobs are out there for them to pursue? It starts with a teacher in the classroom. That teacher being informed, that teacher bringing the experience of whatever that job or that line of work is into the work that she’s doing. WakeEd Partnership is in the business of workforce development. So our summer STEM program invites companies to host teams of educators in their business. In an eight-day professional development, we’re opening that teacher’s eyes to the way that work gets done beyond the classroom.
Shanel Goodson: Working with summer STEM has been the best experience that I’ve had as a teacher. When we went to RedHat, SAS and Cisco, a lot of the things they said they were looking for in future employees are things that we can simply address within the classroom.
(Goodson talking with student) “Are there any clarifying questions for those? Yes, sir.”
(Student to Goodson) “For the documentary….”
So like time management, being able to take a problem and find a solution independently.
(Goodson talking with student) ”Ok, well you can pull up your rubric and can use that to help you. Looks like it’s right there.”
Collaboration is a huge piece in the corporate world and so teaching students how to truly collaborate, how to effectively communicate while also critically thinking and creating, are super important.
Seth Carruthers: The challenges in the business world are always increasing and so we need to have a workforce that’s always improving. Businesses would love a combination of STEM skills and soft skills and project-based learning skills all in one candidate. WakeEd gets all of that and they’ve got all the data to back up what type of programs could improve STEM skills so they can really make the best use of our precious time and the precious time of educators to really make the biggest impact.
Shanel Goodson: I think it’s really important to talk about life after high school. We are preparing for our future workforce. So it only makes sense that we have that natural connection so that we can truly prepare them. Working with summer STEM, it allows us to open doors for students. I’ve been able to partner with several different businesses to facilitate workshops within my classroom. I’ve been able to take students to their actual campuses to show them what it is truly like to be in that type of business.
Teresa Pierrie: When we invest resources in educators, that teacher’s impact ripples across her classroom, her school, her community and throughout the profession. These programs make a difference because they change the way a teacher looks at the work that she is doing with her students.