United Way of Coffee and Moore Counties seeks to prepare our youth for our community’s many STEM careers. Our STEM education program is designed to create a pipeline of compatible experiences that expose children from elementary school through high school to STEM education. This strategically planned exposure is designed to cultivate and nurture an interest in STEM careers.
Our STEM Education Program is the most extensive, widely reaching education program in the county. The program (1) provides annual STEM education to every K-12 student and (2) provides pitch competitions for high school students to utilize their STEM skills with real-world concepts and (3) allows students to interact with current STEM professionals. Currently, United Way works with University of Tennessee Space Institute (UTSI) and Tennessee Technological University (TTU) to offer STEM programs in our 23 public schools. Curriculum offerings depend on age level.
Elementary School UTSI students and other volunteers lead hands-on programs in a variety of areas that teach STEM skills, require innovation, and inspire students to think outside the box. Some programs include: Straw Rockets, Stomp Rockets, Lego League, Coding, etc.
Our middle schools have access to Innovators Week with the TTU STEMmobile. This mobile STEM classroom is a high-tech space for students to learn STEM skills and concepts from college students. While the STEMmobile is parked outside, students also experience activities in their classrooms for a full week of STEM emersion, innovative projects, and STEM exposure.
Volunteers provide seminars including “Testimonies from STEM Professionals” and “STEM Career Opportunities for Women” designed to expose students to a variety of STEM opportunities in our local community. Students can also participate in our Better World Pitch Competitions. We inspire and reward a matured interest in a STEM career by offering pitch competitions for high school students to present their innovations that would make the world a better place. These annual competitions include an application, presentation, review by judges and awards to winners.