The Region 2000 Technology Council, Central Virginia Community College, Future Focus Foundation, and the school divisions of Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford, Campbell, and Lynchburg, along with area business partners are moving closer to launching a Career and Technical STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Academy in our area. Dovetailing with current K-12 STEM activities and workforce development initiatives, the goal of this institution will be to help close the gap between education and industry, furthering the economic vitality of this region.
Implementation of Governor’s CTE-STEM Academies in Virginia began under the Kaine administration in 2007. There are currently 14 approved STEM Academies in Virginia, many of which are the product of Governor McDonnell’s initiative to double the number of STEM Academies in Virginia by the end of his administration.
This type of STEM Academy differs from the Regional Governor’s School for Science and Technology in the type of curriculum and courses offered. CTE-STEM Academy courses will have a career and technical education focus with the curriculum driven by the needs and projected growth of regional industry. Currently the two identified student pathways to be offered at the academy include healthcare and mechatronics; the latter being the blending of mechanical and electrical engineering disciplines.
The Region 2000 CTE-STEM Academy will be located at Central Virginia Community College in the AREVA Technology Center, which includes access to lab equipment and classroom space. Local businesses that have already signed on to assist with the academy include AREVA, The Babcock & Wilcox Company, Centra and Delta Star. Other businesses are being approached to join this regional effort.
“The Region 2000 Governor’s Career-Technical STEM Academy will provide high school students with unparalleled opportunities for advanced training in healthcare and mechatronics,” said CVCC President Dr. John Capps. “Employers need a highly trained workforce, and the academy will answer that need with a relevant, state-of-the-art, industry-driven curriculum. It will provide our workforce of the future with education for the future to ensure the economic vitality of Region 2000.”
The curriculum will have a dual enrollment element offering college credits. This will allow students the option to work toward a college degree. Industry certifications may be developed, allowing for job readiness upon completion of the program. Transfer possibilities for students wishing to continue their education will also be established.
Download the STEM Academy Vision paper or view below:
[pdf http://www.techcouncil.us/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/stem-academy-vision-flyer-7-18-12-for-web.pdf 590 780]