Headline for Featured Item #1 Planting the Seed for STEM Careers - Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
Texas A&M University Corpus Christi - Discover Your Island

Planting the Seed for STEM Careers

May 14, 2013

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CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas Remember your middle or high school math and science classes? The teacher stood at the blackboard or projector reciting concepts while students viewed accompanying handouts. Dr. Faye Bruun says that has to change for the next generation of students.

Bruun, Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership, Curriculum and Instruction, says across the nation, teachers are having trouble maintaining enthusiasm for the STEM subjects; in fact there’s a shortage of new math and science teachers brewing as well.

“If the U.S. continues this lack for STEM educators, then 90 percent of scientists and engineers will be living in Asia,” said Bruun.

Surveys show that half of teens would have been more interested in STEM subjects had their teachers been more motivating. Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi’s College of Education is battling the shortage professionals in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) across the state with new teaching mechanisms.

“We’ve got to concentrate our efforts on middle school students and get them excited about the subjects,” Bruun said.

Computer games and smart boards are among the tools being developed in the College of Education to engage primary and secondary students.

“Being such a technology-driven society,” Bruun said, “it’s important for student to be armed with the skills on how to problem solve.”

STEM accolades:

  • Dr. Bruun was appointed to the Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science (TAMS) advisory board located at the University of North Texas in Denton, to advise gifted high school students in STEM subjects.
  • Dr. Bruun is also the Director of the Coastal Bend Regional Science Fair, which helps eighth grade through high school students in Corpus Christi compete in international science fairs
  • Dr. Karen Paciotti and Annette Guerra were named to the “Top 25 Educators in Texas” list by Online Schools Texas
  • Dr. Denise Hill was re-elected to the Board of Directors of the Science Teachers Association of Texas (STAT)
  • Dr. Denise Hill was chosen as a blind peer-reviewer for “Science and Children” published by the National Science Teacher Association
  • Dr. JoAnn Canales received the USDA-NIFA Supplemental Award to begin the Cultivar Project, addressing the need to attract outstanding, underrepresented students and prepare graduates capable of enhancing the nation's food and agricultural scientific and professional workforce
  • Dr. Lauren Cifuentes is working with subject -matter experts to co-create an open-source course, Ethics in Genomics Research, for the TAMU and Idaho State Systems. The project is funded by the National Science Foundation's Ethics Education in Science and Engineering (EESE) program to help graduate students prepare to make ethical decisions as they conduct their science.


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