The STEM BEST Program at Prairie High School will engage students and local workplaces with technology advanced healthcare experiences using their new Anatomage Table.

School+Business Partnerships = Future-Focused Skills

Prairie High School teachers added a new tool to their toolbox for the current academic year. Students are getting the opportunity to gain a deeper experience in healthcare through a new Anatomage Table. This technologically advanced 3D anatomy visualization and virtual dissection tool was added through the STEM BEST® (Business Engaging Students and Teachers) Program in 2023.

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Students involved in the STEM BEST Program at St. Theresa Catholic School work on career-based projects alongside industry professionals.

Design Days to Support STEM BEST Newcomers

The STEM Council is partnering with the Iowa Area Education Agencies Online (AEA) to provide Design Days – six 30-minute mini-sessions through October and November and a one-day session in early November to share information and provide STEM BEST Program design support.

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Work-Based Learning, Iowa Students and Community Workplace

Work-Based Learning Plans: Remember when there were just twelve?

In 2022, nine Iowa school leaders came together under a partnership of Iowa STEM and the Iowa Department of Education to fashion a model for district-wide, K-12 work-based learning plans.

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STEM BEST Program community partners joined the BEST STEMposium to share perspectives on fostering workplace partnerships with schools.

STEM BEST Innovators Convene to Catalyze Change

Customized professional development, sharing of best practices and networking defined the 2023 BEST STEMposium. Approximately 75 of Iowa’s leading educational innovators gathered in Okoboji for two days to collaborate, learn from the experiences of others and plot the disruption of school-as-usual.

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Students from Boone EDGE, a STEM BEST Program, launched a podcast featuring Boone School District alumni and their career paths.

STEM BEST Students Turn Podcasters

STEM education goes beyond science, technology, engineering and mathematics; it provides durable skills for the future and curiosity for life. What started as curiosity in technology and human connection led to the launch of a successful podcast for students from Boone High School.

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Students from the Linn-Mar Venture Academics, a STEM BEST Program, gain non-traditional, project-based learning experiences in job sectors that are in high demand.

Thirty-Seven School Districts to Join STEM BEST Community

Thirty-seven Iowa school districts will join or expand offerings in the STEM BEST® (Businesses Engaging Students and Teachers) Program to provide students with real workplace experiences. Since STEM BEST launched in 2014, 155 partnerships have been created or expanded to help introduce students to businesses and career opportunities in Iowa, while also gaining high-demand skills.

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Students of No Boundaries Middle School (NOBOMS), a STEM BEST Program, assemble furniture for their room redesign.

STEM BEST = Work-Based Learning

Work-based learning is a phrase coined by the U.S. Department of Labor to label learning experiences for students in a workplace setting. The STEM BEST Program is one of many work-based learning, or what STEM leaders call career-linked learning, opportunities available through the STEM Council.

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The STEM BEST + HD Program application opens October 3.

Students to Develop High-Demand Skills with STEM BEST + HD Program

The application period is quickly approaching for the STEM BEST + HD (High-Demand) Program. Beginning October 3, public and non-public K-12 school districts and school buildings can submit an application to launch or expand a business partnership model to provide students with career-linked learning experiences.

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Students paired with community and business volunteers to work on real-world projects using their makerspace.

Twelve Schools Grow Workplace Experience through STEM BEST Program

The STEM BEST (Businesses Engaging Students and Teachers) Program of the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council drives partnerships of K-12 schools and community employers.

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The BEST STEMposium offered a collaborative professional development experience for STEM BEST Programs.

Forging Connections and Opportunities through BEST STEMposium

More than 70 educators, administrators and business partners of STEM BEST Programs across the state attended the first-ever BEST STEMposium, held at the University of Northern Iowa. The event fostered meaningful conversations with STEM BEST Program leaders to enhance career-linked learning in communities across Iowa.

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