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GVSU a main recipient of funding to boost statewide STEM education

GVSU a main recipient of funding to boost statewide STEM education

March 15, 2022

Grand Valley is set to receive a $900,000 state grant as part of a five-year plan to help expand K-12 computer science education in a statewide effort to broaden STEM education in Michigan. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced this week that GVSU is one of three educational entities to receive the five-year grants. The other two are the Kalamazoo Regional Educational Service Agency and the Washtenaw Intermediate School District.

This year’s funding will support the continuation of educator and student STEM programs and convene a diverse group of stakeholders to develop a four-year strategic plan. “STEM education opportunities are critical as we prepare young Michiganders for high-tech, high-skill careers that will serve as the backbone of Michigan’s economy,” Whitmer said. “These investments are critical to ensure our schools have the funds to help each and every Michigander reach their full potential."

State officials reimagined how to move Michigan's STEM education forward by creating three educational action areas, with each grant recipient focusing on one aspect of STEM, said Kris Pachla, director of GVSU's Regional Math and Science Center, which is administering the funds awarded to Grand Valley. GVSU has been awarded this grant annually for the next five years, pending appropriations. As Grand Valley team members lead the computer science segment of the statewide plan, they will ensure each individual MiSTEM Network region receives funding to help educational experts address MiSTEM needs specific to their areas. 

"GVSU was selected to lead the computer science work because of our strong history of leadership in this K-12 computer science, our history of leadership in the MiSTEM Network, and our capacity to bring multiple stakeholders together toward a common vision of computer science," Pachla said. The initial work will involve increasing access and equity in the offering of computer science for K-12 students, professional development for computer science educators and highlighting opportunities for careers in the field.

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Page last modified March 16, 2022