WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Angus King (I-Maine) announced today that Saint Joseph’s College in Standish has received $102,997 in funding from the National Science Foundation to support a scholarship program that seeks to encourage students to study and pursue careers in science education, as well as help connect graduates with high-need school districts in Maine.
“A 21st century workforce requires workers with 21st century skills, and Maine should pursue solutions that can boost our state’s STEM-based education,” said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement. “In order to continue training future Maine leaders in STEM careers, we need to ensure that there are enough teachers and mentors to help along the way. We welcome this funding, which will allow Saint Joseph’s College to incentivize those interested in pursuing a career in scientific education. In turn, graduates from high-need schools will be presented with an opportunity to make a difference in their own communities.”
The funding is awarded through NSF’s Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program Capacity Building project, which directs grant recipients to create a plan to recruit students from high-need schools who have an interest in studying education. Recipient institutions will aim to complete their goal by following three project objectives:
· Creating new ways to increase student awareness of science teaching careers;
· Smoothing the pathways for incoming college students to enter STEM educational fields;
· Establishing connections and creating a communicative network between the recipient organization, high-needs schools, and community partners.
Saint Joseph’s College plans to develop partnerships between the following school districts: Biddeford, Bonny Eagle, Caribou, Fort Kent, Gray-New Gloucester, Lewiston, Westbrook, and Windham. Southern Maine Community College and Central Maine Community College will serve as community college partners.