Program to Drive Talented Underserved Students Toward STEM Careers
Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics (BEAM) creates pathways for underserved students to become scientists, mathematicians, engineers, and computer scientists. The nonprofit has provided its services for free to more than 600 students since 2011. Before creating the pathways, BEAM asks itself, what do most scientists, mathematicians, engineers, and programmers do growing up? and then, how can we bring those same opportunities to underserved students? After considering these questions, BEAM creates a series of experiences for students in grades 6–12: a sixth-grade summer program in Los Angeles and New York City; a seventh-grade residential summer program on college campuses; advice to help students in eighth through twelfth grades attend great high schools, pass algebra in eighth grade, access other enrichment programs, and ultimately go to an excellent college. Students declaring STEM majors also get support during their college years. Through its work, BEAM helps to diversify other enrichment programs and gives students a realistic chance at the career of their dreams.
In smaller rural schools, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education can face troublesome barriers. In our K–12 district of 730 students, we have many of the common obstacles, including limited funds, no extra faculty, and an already overloaded class schedule. These three join arms to block us from using any of the really cool programs we’d like to. Other institutions sing praises of cutting-edge programs and share their successes. Meanwhile, rural schools are trying to figure out how to educate equally deserving kids in STEM.
Each month we publish blogs and several newsletters full of digital learning, funding, professional growth, social media, and STEM resources. Below are items from our blogs and newsletters that educators turned to the most in May.