BOSTON – Today, Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll joined Education Secretary Patrick Tutwiler to kick off the annual Massachusetts STEM Week, a weeklong series of events across the state to encourage students to see themselves in STEM and highlight the variety of educational and workforce training opportunities in STEM fields available to students of all ages. This year, the Healey-Driscoll administration has chosen “YOUR STEM future is OUR STEM future,” as the theme of STEM Week 2023, to emphasize that current students are the next generation of scientists, engineers, and inventors whose innovations will define the future, including continued efforts address the climate crisis.
“STEM Week is a call to action for educators and employers across Massachusetts to help open doors for our youngest generation, especially to STEM pathways,” said Governor Maura Healey. “By empowering each and every one of our students to explore every option available to them, and allowing them to see STEM as a viable, exciting pathway to their future, we will inspire the next generation of STEM innovators and the future leaders in our efforts to combat the climate crisis.”
“We depend on the math, science, technology, and engineering students of today to be the industry leaders of tomorrow. And in the context of the global climate crisis, Massachusetts also depends on future STEM leaders and innovators to deliver progress and sustainable solutions as we fight for a cleaner planet,” said Lt. Governor Driscoll. “This STEM Week, we really want students to learn about all the STEM opportunities and programming available to them, whether it’s through the clean energy innovation career pathway, pursuing a nursing degree, or even participating in a STEM internship.”
Lt. Governor Driscoll and Secretary Tutwiler were joined at the STEM Week Kickoff Event and young scientist exhibition by k-12 students in the Boston area, as well as students, faculty and staff at Boston University. The event was held at Boston University’s Center for Computer and Data Sciences, the largest fossil-free building in Boston and one of the greenest buildings in all of New England. At the kickoff, the Lt. Governor signed the proclamation officially declaring October 16th through 20th STEM Week in the Commonwealth. Students presented a variety of STEM projects, exploring ways to clean the Charles River, solutions for eliminating climate misinformation, and even ways to encourage more interest in STEM education.
“Our current students are the next generation of scientists, engineers, and inventors whose future innovations will serve to tackle the challenges we face as a society, and to illuminate possibilities we don’t yet know exist—but we have to help get them there. STEM Week will help students realize and explore potential futures in high demand industries, where they can find successful and fulfilling careers,” said Secretary of Education Patrick Tutwiler. “I am so grateful to the schools, colleges and universities, museums and businesses that are hosting engaging events where students can see firsthand how exciting and meaningful a future in STEM can be.”
More than 40% of Massachusetts’s economy centers on jobs in STEM fields, including advanced manufacturing, information technology, health care, biotechnology, and clean energy, which means improving STEM pathways for students is directly related to the Commonwealth’s workforce needs. In order to meet the demands of the rapidly growing STEM economy, the Healey-Driscoll Administration’s FY24 budget delivers $46.4 million for Early College and Innovation Pathways, a $14 million expansion over fiscal year 2023, and just last month awarded nearly $650,000 in Innovation Career Pathway planning grantsto support schools in developing new career pathways, including six new clean energy pathway programs.
STEM Week takes place during the third week of October each year and is organized by the Executive Office of Education and the STEM Advisory Councilin partnership with the state’s Nine Regional STEM Networks. Across the Commonwealth, schools, colleges and universities, museums and businesses will hold STEM-focused events for students of all ages. For more information about STEM Week and to find STEM events going on across the Commonwealth, visit www.mass.gov/stemweek.