South Carolina faces two converging challenges for the future of its students and workforce: first, a critical shortage of public school educators, particularly in STEM areas; and second, the changing nature of jobs requiring an advanced understanding of STEM content areas and the skills required to tackle complex problems. The state will need to significantly increase its number of STEM educators in order to meet the demands of an evolving economy. Comporium, a family-owned diversified communications company now employing 1100 people in nine counties across the state and the founding sponsor, realizes that investing in the STEM Teacher of the Year award is also investing in the future of the state’s public education system.
STEM education is one of the most effective tools we have to prepare our students for college and career success that awaits them. The Profile of the SC Graduate supports STEM as world-class knowledge; such knowledge is beneficial when complemented by important world-class skills that are focused on building critical and creative thinking and analytical skills by addressing how students view and experience the world around them.
STEM educators hold the content knowledge necessary to teach and facilitate learning within their content area, as well as the ability to collaborate with other content area educators in order to create interdisciplinary, integrated opportunities for student learning. STEM educators include elementary, middle and high school STEM content area educators and CTE (Career and Technical Education) educators. STEM teaching prepares learners to be critical and creative thinkers, innovators, problem solvers, collaborators, team players, and strong communicators. STEM learners persevere through global and community problems, are self-directed and are better prepared to face the challenges of a competitive and constantly changing society.
Effective STEM teaching and learning rely on:
Comporium in partnership with South Carolina Future Minds, Dominion Energy, and S2TEM Centers are joining together to honor teachers who are inspiring students across the state to develop a passion for STEM subjects. This award is for teachers who are making a significant difference in the lives of students across the state by providing excellent curriculum, encouraging lifelong learning and inspiring a passion for STEM beyond the classroom and into the future. We understand the importance of what you do and we want to honor one teacher from each of the five STEM regions with an award just for you!
One winner will be selected from each of the regional locations to make up the five finalists. Finalists will each receive $1,000 with the winning SC STEM Teacher receiving $5,000 along with funds for professional development.
S2TEM centers regions map https://www.s2temsc.org/
Coastal Pee Dee Region
Anyone, including oneself, can nominate a deserving teacher. Once, nominated, the teacher is sent Phase 2 of the application process and must answer all questions. The South Carolina STEM Educator of the Year Committee then reviews all of the nomination applications and selects five finalists to be interviewed in late – winter/early spring. Once the interview process is complete, a winner is selected.