New Business Spotlight: Tidelands Health

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Tidelands Health is committed to more than just its patients. It is also committed to its employees and communities. Comprised of three hospitals, more than fifty outpatient locations, and over 2,000 employees and physician partners, Tidelands Health is one of coastal South Carolina’s largest healthcare systems. It is also one of the newest organizations to join STEM Premier's growing network as it seeks to build relationships with South Carolina students interested in pursuing the healthcare vocation.  . 

Tideland Health’s mission of helping people live better lives through better health began more than sixty years ago in Georgetown, SC. In 1946, citizens of Georgetown committed to constructing a hospital to serve the local community. That commitment came to life in 1950, when the first patient was admitted at Georgetown County Memorial Hospital - later to become Tidelands Georgetown Memorial Hospital. Since then, the hospital has expanded and two additional hospitals have become a part of the system: Tidelands Waccamaw Community Hospital and Tidelands Waccamaw Rehabilitation Hospital. Over its sixty-year history, the system has provided healthcare to countless patients.

While its patients are always the #1 priority, Tidelands Health also prioritizes and invests in its employees. “We are focused on creating an environment where professional development is encouraged, innovation is rewarded and a healthy work-life balance is nurtured,” explains Busy Kimball, Manager of Talent Acquisition at Tidelands Health.

That's why Tidelands Health wants to be known amongst South Carolina’s students - and future healthcare professionals - so that they consider it when planning their futures. “We are excited to partner with STEM Premier and believe it will help us deepen our relationship within the region by introducing Tidelands Health to members of the community at a young age,” says Busy. “Though this partnership, we will provide financial support and educational opportunities to prepare young people in our area for a future in health care.”

These educational opportunities include internships, mentorships, and shadowing so that students can get first-hand experiences of what it’s like to work for Tidelands. The goal is to connect interested young students with experts in health-related fields and introducing them to the large variety of career paths available in healthcare.  

Busy says that prospective employees of should be self-driven and open-minded. “Tidelands Health is looking for self-motivated individuals with an interest in health care, a positive, customer service-focused attitude and a sense of pride in their work,” she explains. “In addition, we choose to support and hire individuals who demonstrate an openness to diversity and project a sense of inclusion for individuals unlike themselves.”

By prioritizing these criteria in their hiring process, Tidelands Health has built a network of professionals who are ready and willing to engage outside of the workplace. For prospective employees, becoming part of Tidelands Health also means becoming a part of the community. “Beyond our hospitals,” says Busy, “we partner with the community to deliver health and wellness services. Through the Tidelands Health Sports Medicine Institute, for example, we fund athletic trainers in area high schools...and our Tidelands Community Care Network, a regional collaborative of more than 30 community service organizations, churches, associations and state agencies, connects our region’s uninsured and underinsured residents with medical care and critical services such as food, housing and transportation.”

STEM Premier is excited to welcome Tidelands Health to our network, and we look forward to the enhanced engagement it will provide for students pursuing professions in healthcare; such as those involved with our partner HOSA.  

STEM Premier Powers SME's SOUTH-TEC Rising Stars Day

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We at STEM Premier always love a challenge. 

In October, we were asked by our friends at SME to help them identify and connect with the top STEM and CTE high school talent in the South and invite them to apply for an inaugural recognition event called Champions of Tomorrow: Rising Stars Day - a day recognizing outstanding STEM and CTE students from South Carolina and North Carolina.

The event would occur at SME's SOUTH-TEC - A multi-day event which attracts manufacturers, distributors and equipment builders from across the world, SOUTH-TEC is a hub of industry evolution and innovation. It also presented an excellent opportunity to shine a spotlight on these industries, and specifically on the young students of today who will be industry leaders tomorrow.

The annual event is hosted by SME in partnership with AMT, and supported by our friends at SC FutureMakers and SkillsUSA in Greenville, SC.

With over 300,000 of the best and brightest in the country on STEM Premier, SME knew the fastest way to find and engage students fitting to be Rising Stars was through our virtual platform.

The application process was hosted through STEM Premier, and was a huge success. Within a few days, SME received a large number of applications from many deserving students in North and South Carolina. On October 24, thirty-four high school juniors and seniors were honored in front of industry leaders and representatives. It was an exciting moment for both the students and professionals.

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The day included a panel discussion on workforce development featuring prominent leaders from both private and public sectors, including SkillsUSA Executive Director Timothy Lawrence, South Carolina Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman, and BMW’s Community and Government Relations Manager Max Metcalf. Also providing remarks were SME CEO Jeffery Krause and STEM Premier Co-Founder Casey Welch.

STEM Premier even helped SME design a special digital badge recognizing the Rising Stars and proudly displays on their STEM Premier profiles alongside their other skills, talents, and achievements.

We were proud to play a role in such a prestigious event, and we wish the best of luck to each and every student recognized as a Rising Star.

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Looking Closer: Student Interest in Media and Communications

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In recent posts, we shed some light on some of the career interests of STEM Premier student members. Now we’re delving deeper into select industries to see exactly what careers students have on their radar. Today, we’re looking at the media and communications industry.

As the U.S. continues its transition into a knowledge economy, media and communications professions are becoming increasingly prevalent as they are necessary for the generation, curation, translation, and dissemination of information. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts that media and communication occupations will grow six percent from 2016 to 2026, resulting in approximately 45,000 new jobs.

According to CollegeFactual.com, the top universities in the U.S. for media and communications include Stanford, The University of Pennsylvania, American University, University of Southern California, Northwestern, and Emerson College (MA).

To get a better idea of some of the media and communications occupations which STEM Premier students are interested, here is a small sample:

  • Broadcast Technicians
  • Editors
  • Interpreters
  • Public Relations Specialists
  • News Analysts
  • Reporters

Is your school or organization looking for these kinds of students? If so, join STEM Premier today and start connecting.

STEM Premier Spotlight: Colorado

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Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 2,400+
  • Top College Interests: University Of Colorado - Boulder, Colorado State University, Colorado School of Mines
  • Top Intended Majors: Computer Science, Nursing, Bioengineering

Our next state spotlight takes us to the scenic Rocky Mountains for a closer look at the state of Colorado. Home to a bevy of federal military and scientific establishments including North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), The United States Air Force Academy, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), there’s quite a lot of action in the Centennial State.

Colorado’s largest concentrations of STEM Premier students are located in Denver, Colorado Springs, and Ft. Collins. Other notable areas of student presence include Grand Junction, Vail, La Junta, and Pueblo.

The top occupational interests of Colorado’s students include nursing, mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering, and aeronautical engineering.

ACT’s 2016 Condition of STEM Report on Colorado has shown a slight decrease in overall STEM interest among the state’s students over the past year. This decrease seems to be caused by a shift of interest areas from the medical science and engineering disciplines to computer science and mathematics; not necessarily an unexpected shift in the modern information age. Interest in the medical sciences has lessened by 2% over the past five years and - at 35% - lags behind the national average of 41%. But - as mentioned above - interest in general science outpaces the national average by 3%, and interest in computer science and mathematics is ahead by 1% of the national average.

 Learn more about STEM in Colorado by checking out ACT's full report.

Making an Impact: SC Future Makers

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In 2016, we embarked on a journey with the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance (SCMA) to launch SC Future Makers, an ambitious initiative to connect South Carolina’s business and the state’s talented students.

Powered by the STEM Premier platform, SC Future Makers provides a powerful resource for students, schools, and businesses to learn about each other and connect in meaningful, productive ways. And within just one year of its implementation, it’s clear that it’s making an impact throughout the state.  

Already 43% of South Carolina’s high schools across 53 of the state’s 81 districts have adopted the SC Future Makers initiative, resulting in over 44,000 new student profiles on STEM Premier. This rapid growth is attributed to the flexibility that the initiative's online nature provides. “Unlike a career day,” explains James Richter, SCMA Director of Workforce Development “SC Future Makers profiles are available 24-7 and can be updated.”

And because high schools serve as the conduit for this opportunity, students can equally participate regardless of geography or socioeconomic background. As with all STEM Premier student profiles, registering and maintaining an account is free, allowing students to establish their presence and immediately begin connecting with employers.

“Companies and colleges need to reach students online, but do so in a relevant way,” says Richter. “Oftentimes social media posts are not the most effective way to communicate a larger story to students because that's their personal domain. By empowering students to showcase their interests in professional profiles and connect to opportunities, we're working in their domain in a different way.”

But despite this early success, STEM Premier and SCMA are not resting on their laurels. We’ve set new goals, intending to implement SC Future Makers in virtually every South Carolina high school and technical college while reaching 100,000 student profiles.

New College Spotlight: York College of Pennsylvania

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From day one, York College of Pennsylvania has been on a mission to prepare its students for purposeful and productive lives. A private liberal arts university located a stone’s throw away from the scenic Susquehanna River, York College prides itself on providing the large college experience combined with small college warmth.

And as one of the newest institutions to partner with STEM Premier, they know exactly the type of student they are looking for.

For York College, It all starts with proactivity.

“Students come to York College of Pennsylvania because they want to take action,” explains Andy Shaw, Director of Operations and Enrollment Communications. “They want internships or paid co-operative learning that lead to jobs. They want to conduct research with faculty or have a professor who will meet with them one-on-one. They want to get engaged right away.”

Larger institutions may have difficulty in managing these types of expectations, but York College strives to provide hands-on instruction and engagement for each of its 4000 students. Its 15:1 faculty-to-student ratio provides the opportunity for meaningful relationships to develop and grow between professors and their pupils. “It is not uncommon for a student to spend an hour kicking back with a professor about their career path, trends in the field, and more,” says Shaw.

York offers over sixty bachelor's degree programs, all of which emphasize experience-based learning and involved faculty. York utilizes a program called Generation Next, a unique approach to academic curricula - which helps students create a system of courses that allow them to explore personal interests, as well as enhance and strengthen the skills and abilities valued by their major and potential employers.

With STEM Premier, York College is excited about having access to a diverse group of high-achieving students with a keen interest in STEM. In addition to a traditional liberal arts education, York also offers exceptional degree programs in engineering, healthcare, and other STEM disciplines. 

Beyond the classroom, students are provided with productive outlets for their work and ambitions, such as Elevator Pitch Competitions which have garnered the interests of organizations such as Apple and Google.

All in all, the student experience at York College is described as “friendly, supportive, and action-packed.”

“Students spend a lot of time in the Kinsley Engineering Center,” says Shaw. “There's even a built-in kitchen and lounge area, because they are always working on a project, fine-tuning their research, or talking with faculty.”

Of course, there’s also plenty of opportunities for students to unwind. “With 23 NCAA teams, a modern recreation and fitness center, and daily events, there's always something to do.” 

And with Baltimore, Washington D.C., and New York City all located within reasonable driving distance from campus, students at York are uniquely situated to take advantage of the recreational and professional opportunities offered by these large metropolitan areas. 

Learn more about York College of Pennsylvania.

STEM Premier Reaches 250,000 Student Members

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October marks an important moment for us as we continue our mission to build relationships between students, schools, and businesses.

That’s because this October was the month that our 250,000th student member decided to place their trust - and their future - in STEM Premier. That number continues to grow as more and more students are discovering STEM Premier as the one place they can really showcase everything that makes them special

The importance of this milestone is apparent to anyone who has studied the rise of online networking platforms. The value of these platforms is subject to a phenomenon known the Network Effect, whereby a technology increases in value with every additional user. The more individuals who share a platform increase the amount of potential connections which can result. 

For STEM Premier, this means that schools and employers are quickly gaining access to larger and larger numbers of young people all over the country who will be future students and employees of theirs. Our excitement is compounded by the fact that our 250,000 student members come from all 50 U.S. states and represent a wide variety of backgrounds, interests, skills, talents, and expertise.

At the end of the day, 250,000 isn’t what we care about. It’s just a number. Rather, we care about what that number represents.  

It represents a quarter-million unique stories.

It represents a quarter-million powerful ambitions.

But most importantly, it represents a quarter-million bright futures.

As Soft Skills Become Rarer, STEM Premier Provides a Solution for Employers

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July was a high-water mark for employment as U.S. job openings hit a record 6.2 million. On the other hand, actual hiring remains sluggish as employers struggle to find qualified candidates who meet all the requirements of these jobs.

Because of this, firms have begun to forego finding candidates who completely match their needs. Not doing so may mean turning a four-week hiring process into a twelve-week process. The need for expediency and practicality has replaced the desire for the ideal candidate.

One solution companies are utilizing is to hire candidates whose personality and soft-skills are a good fit for their organization, even if their technical skills may be lacking. In-house training programs are, subsequently, on the rise.

What does this mean for your organization and STEM Premier? You need talent who can thrive in your organization, and today’s job market is providing organizations with unique challenges. Finding a job candidate with a lofty GPA isn’t that difficult. But finding a candidate who can handle difficult clients is mostly luck-of-the-draw.

Grade-point-averages, standardized test scores, and even resumes can only tell you so much about a potential employee. That’s why STEM Premier student profiles are designed to give schools and employers a much more comprehensive understanding of the human being who created it. Of course, test scores and GPAs are a part of a student’s profile. But that’s just the beginning.

Need an employee who can organize a presentation or written proposal? Students can upload academic or professional projects to their profile in several formats such as .PDF and .PPT.

Looking for someone who has that gift of gab? The video upload feature allows students to showcase performances, presentations, or even just a personal testimonial.

Desire an employee who can be relied on to manage their time effectively? Check out their academic, athletic, extracurricular, and philanthropic involvements, and see if they've developed this vital skill.

The bottom line is that you need employees who can connect with your organization’s values, mission, and culture. It’s not the technical skills that are becoming rarer; students are flocking to STEM disciplines in large numbers. It’s those soft-skills and intangibles that are becoming the difference-maker in the job hunt. The problem is that soft-skills are called that because, well, they aren’t exactly measurable.

STEM Premier can help you find that talent who would otherwise go unseen amidst a stack of resumes.

 

What Students Are Saying About STEM Premier

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We are always striving to make the STEM Premier experience an incredible one for all of our users. Because of that, constant communication with both our student and organizational users is vital. Their input helps us ensure that the STEM Premier platform is the best it can be.

It’s always positive to hear what our users enjoy about the platform, and we’ve asked student users all over the U.S. to tell us what they like about the STEM Premier experience.

Here’s what they had to say!

Alex (Wallingford, PA) “The ability to create a profile for colleges to see and reach out to students with is - for me - the most important part of STEM Premier. If it weren't for this, I wouldn't be where I am now.”

Sydney (Chapin, SC) “It's helping me keep track of everything I need for my college applications. It'll be great to already have everything in one place, so I won't have to go searching around for it when this coming September rolls around.”

Ujwala (Columbus, IN) “It is a great place to display all of my credentials and to connect with amazing opportunities.”

Hezekiah (Columbia, SC) “The facility of organizing my information as well as the design of the website. I also appreciate how other people can view my profile and gain insight into my personality and accomplishments.”

Lydia (Fremont, CA) “The platform isn't just made for the student; it's also made by the student.”

Julia (Orlando, FL) “It's hard to know exactly what a good score on the ACT or SAT is. The STEM Premier dashboard color-codes your scores, and it is actually very helpful in determining whether or not retaking the test is the best option.”

Vy (Wichita, KS) "It helps me organize everything in one account! I can easily put down all the information they want colleges to know, such as experiences, achievements, and test scores. I can also share my profile with anyone, so it is way more efficient.”

Smriti (Troy, NY) “By updating information like my coursework and experiences, it matches me with opportunities.”

Akporesiri (Chicago, IL) “What’s there NOT to love?”

Lyndi (Sergeant Bluff, IA) “It gives me the opportunity to meet people and learn about colleges while showing them who I am, all in one spot. It make the college search a little less overwhelming.”

Austen (Round Rock, TX) “The connection it gives me with the STEM industry. After all, it is an industry known for designing and defining the future of the world; it’s nice to be able to get a glance at the future this early on.”

Are you a student - or know someone - who would benefit from the connections and opportunities STEM Premier has to offer? Create a free profile today!

New College Spotlight: Charleston Southern University

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In the vibrant Carolina lowcountry resides the newest STEM Premier institution: Charleston Southern University.

Founded in 1964, CSU is a Christian liberal arts institution which combines a faith-based approach and a mission of strong academic excellence. Its 60+ degree programs - offered both at the undergraduate and graduate level as well as online - provide a wide range of academic and vocational options for its 3,600 students. The academic programs are complemented by a NCAA Division 1 athletics program and an excellent student support apparatus.

Jameson Willey, Enrollment Services Programmer, explains that CSU’s unique mission means recruiting a special kind of student. “CSU looks for students that view their education as a priority,” he says, “students that want to be challenged and do their best.”

CSU knows these students are out there. However, their biggest recruiting obstacle is getting the CSU brand in front of them, especially when Clemson, the University of South Carolina, and the College of Charleston are also competing for attention.

“Our biggest challenge is getting on the radar of students so they can begin to have their eyes opened to us as a viable option,” Jameson says. “While other institutions in our state certainly have a unique appeal, we believe we have an appeal that is just as unique. CSU offers a lot of what these other institutions offer and, perhaps more importantly, a lot of what they cannot offer.”

“STEM Premier will help us to connect on a more personal level with students, allowing us to incorporate our intimate campus environment into our recruiting practices.”

Charleston Southern University boasts an impressive 14-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio which drives a more personalized approach to each academic program designed to develop critical problem-solving and communication skills.

“Our goal,” Jameson declares, “is to connect with students that will thrive in our unique environment.”

When asked to describe the student experience is like at CSU, Jameson didn’t shy away!

“CSU students enjoy a campus experience like no other! They benefit from a wealth of resources to help them succeed and have fun while they do it. From free tutoring and learning resources to NCAA Division 1 athletics and expansive extracurricular activities, we pride ourselves on our student-focus built upon a faith-based foundation. Not to mention, we are located minutes from historic Charleston, South Carolina.”

Learn more about Charleston Southern University.

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Looking Closer: Student Interest in Environmental Sciences and Wildlife

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In prior blog posts, we’ve shed some light on some of the career interests of STEM Premier student users. Now we’re delving deeper into select industries to see exactly what careers students have on their radar. Today, we’re looking at the environmental science and wildlife industries.

These industries generally utilize knowledge of the natural sciences in order to protect the environment and human health. They may clean up polluted areas, advise policymakers, or work with industry to reduce waste. More specifically, they may collect samples and data, analyze and determine threats to the environment, develop plans to address environmental issues, and execute environmental policy and procedures.  

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects this industry to grow eleven percent by 2024, which is a faster clip than the overall average for all industries. This rapid growth can be attributed to heightened public interest in the environment as well as the increasing stress placed on the environment due to population growth.

According to Ecology Project International, some of the top schools for environmental sciences in the U.S. include Amherst College (MA), Colby College (ME), Colorado College, Montana State University, and Pomona College (CA).  

To get a better idea of some of the environmental science and wildlife occupations which STEM Premier students are interested in, here is a small sample:

  • Environmental Scientists
  • Environmental Inspectors
  • Park Rangers
  • Wildlife Technicians
  • Conservation Scientists
  • Wastewater Treatment Operators

Is your school or organization looking for these kinds of students? If so, join STEM Premier today and start connecting.

STEM Premier Connections: Inspiring the Future of Healthcare

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STEM Premier isn’t just about recruiting. It’s also about helping students fulfill their dreams. Often times, connecting a student with a life-changing opportunity is more impactful than connecting them with a school or employer.

Smriti Moorjani, a student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, has never doubted her ambition to be a doctor. It’s a goal which inspired her to get involved with HOSA - Future Health Professionals when she was only fourteen years old. “A majority of upperclassmen in my high school were involved in HOSA,” she recalls, “they shared their experiences in this organization, which was really inspiring to learn about.”

Regular membership in the organization quickly led to more involved roles, as she eventually became the organization’s Historian for the entire state of New Jersey. She credits this role as having helped her develop as a leader.

It was Smriti's engagement with HOSA which led her to STEM Premier. “I was interested in applying for certain opportunities in HOSA, and the application was available through STEM Premier.”

One of those opportunities was applying to the HOSA 2017 Public Health Leadership Scholars Program, a unique one-week program through the US Department of Health and Human Services. By being selected, Smriti was able to spend a week in Washington D.C. with like-minded peers gaining knowledge about public health. She met with public health leaders, toured facilities, and discussed a variety of relevant and pressing topics.

“By exposing us to the many sectors within public health, this program helped us better understand the field and how we can incorporate public health in our future careers,” she explains. “At the end of the program, we created final presentations that summarized our experiences and what we learned from this program.”

Smriti also took advantage of STEM Premier to apply for a $2,000 National HOSA Scholarship, which she was awarded. 

She especially appreciates how the STEM Premier platform tailors her user experience based on her profile. “By updating information like my coursework and experiences, it matches me with opportunities.”

Her passion for health care doesn’t end with HOSA. Over the years, Smriti has become involved with a plethora of health-related organizations which have helped her refine her skills and knowledge through service, competition, and mentorship.

At such a young age, she is passionately committed to helping others. And there is a little doubt that she will soon be making an impact on a much larger scale.

Learn a bit more about Smriti in her own words:

Something you wouldn't know about me is...that I enjoy photography.

For fun, I like to….listen to music; it’s a huge stress-reliever!

If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, I would want to meet…Dr. Sanjay Gupta. I am inspired by his dedication to the healthcare field and want to learn more about his experiences.

The best teacher I’ve ever had was….Mr. Pfeffer, my high school physical science teacher. He is both an outstanding teacher and amazing mentor.

The last app I downloaded on my phone was….Netflix.

In ten years, I see myself….completing my education and training to become a doctor.

My greatest dream is...to wholeheartedly contribute to improving others’ lives.

STEM Premier Spotlight: Wisconsin

Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 2,000+
  • Top College Interests: University Of Wisconsin, University of Minnesota, Marquette University, Milwaukee School of Engineering
  • Top Intended Majors: Biology, Bioengineering, Mechanical Engineering

 For this month’s STEM Premier Spotlight, we’re heading North for a closer look at the state of Wisconsin. Home of the University of Wisconsin, considered one of the top public university in the nation, the Badger State’s STEM Premier’s student base is a diverse and accomplished group of students. In fact, one of every ten STEM Premier student users in Wisconsin is a National Honor Society member!

 Wisconsin’s largest concentration of STEM Premier students is located in Milwaukee and its suburbs. Other notable areas of student presence are found in Madison, Green Bay, and the outskirts of Minneapolis-St.Paul on Wisconsin’s side of the border.

 The top occupational interests of Wisconsin’s students include mechanical engineering, biological science, biomedical engineering, pediatrics, and aeronautical engineering.

 ACT’s 2016 Condition of STEM Report on Wisconsin has shown a slight decrease in overall STEM interest among the state’s students over the past year. This decrease seems to be caused by a shift of interest areas. Interest in the medical sciences has lessened by 5% over the past five years and - at 38% - lags behind the national average of 41%. However, the opposite holds true for interest in the areas of computer science, mathematics, and engineering. Student interest in Wisconsin outpaces the national average in each of these three areas.

 Learn more about STEM in Illinois by checking out ACT's full report.

New College Spotlight: The Cooper Union

New York City is home to nearly one hundred universities and colleges spread throughout the vast metropolitan area. Some of them - like NYU and Columbia - you can probably name off the top of your head. However, the island of Manhattan is home to a bevy of exceptional schools that may not necessarily be household names outside of the Big Apple.

We’ve recently partnered with one such school, The Cooper Union, to help them sort through the city's and region’s college-bound students and personally connect with those whose academic aspirations match The Cooper Union’s mission.

The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art was founded in the mid-1850’s by industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper. Particularly known for its architecture, art, and engineering programs, Cooper Union envisions itself as an institution dedicated to preparing students to make enlightened contributions to society. True to this mission, the college awards every admitted student with a scholarship.

STEM Premier is excited to be working with such an esteemed institution. It is consistently recognized for its academic programs, and it was recently named #1 among Regional Colleges North by U.S. News And World Report. We recently caught up with Abby Davis, Assistant Director of Admissions at Cooper Union, who told us a bit more about the college and how they intend to utilize STEM Premier.

Tell us a little bit about The Cooper Union and its mission
Cooper Union was founded in 1859 with the radical notion that education should be accessible to everyone, regardless of race, religion, or gender, so that they could improve their employment opportunities.

What does The Cooper Union look for in prospective students?
Students need to know that they want to study one of the three majors we offer - architecture, visual arts, or engineering. Important traits include time management ability, maturity, and independence.

What is the student experience like on campus?
Students at Cooper Union are driven, focused, and passionate. With an enrollment of fewer than 1000 students, students get to know their classmates well and also get to work one on one with faculty members. It is an intimate experience in the heart of downtown Manhattan.

How will STEM Premier change the way The Cooper Union recruits?
STEM Premier can help us reach well-qualified students who live in places where Cooper Union is less well known.

There are a plethora of colleges, schools, and universities in Manhattan. How will STEM Premier help The Cooper Union stand out from the rest?
The personalized connection STEM Premier provides throughout the recruitment process mirrors the type of educational environment we foster at Cooper.

STEM Premier Connections: How Webb Institute is Finding the Perfect Fit

Last month, we put the spotlight on Alex Koziol, a high school senior from Wallingford, PA and a STEM Premier student user. Despite receiving acceptance letters from prestigious institutions like Carnegie Mellon and the United States Coast Guard Academy, Alex decided to commit to another school; a school he had never even heard of when he began his college search. He chose Webb Institute, a private undergraduate college located in Glen Cove, NY.

Webb Institute is solely dedicated to Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering. So it goes without saying that their pool of potential students is much smaller than the typical college or university. That means they have to dig deeper and recruit smarter in order to find their next class of all-stars, all the while competing against schools which have much more name-recognition.

So why did Alex choose Webb Institute? Lauren Carballo, Director of Admissions and Student Affairs, explains that "through STEM Premier, we had the opportunity to send personalized messages to students who we believed could be great fits for Webb Institute.”

By utilizing STEM Premier, Webb was able to hone in on prospective students - including Alex - who matched the type of matriculate they were looking for. Once they found them, they were able to recruit and communicate with them in such a way that made other colleges seem impersonal.

“One student in particular caught our attention,” Lauren continues, “who we thought would be a great addition to our community.”

That student was Alex.

“I actually first noticed Webb because of a message from them on STEM Premier,” says Alex. “Its reference to my activities rather than simple academic talent piqued my interest.”

That simple message was powerful enough to drastically alter Alex’s college plans.

“He responded to our message, set up a visit and fell in love with Webb,” says Lauren. “We're so excited that Alex will be part of the Class of 2021!"  

Alex couldn’t be happier with his unexpected change of plans. “I was fortunate to have the choice between some amazing schools,” he says, “but I chose Webb because it fit my interests and personality the most closely...I didn't start out obsessed with ships, but in the month since my decision, I sure have gotten there!”

STEM Premier Spotlight: Tashiba Pearson

Last, month, we began a series of blog posts in order to recognize some of the incredible K-12 educators we have had the privilege of working with. These are energetic, forward-thinking, and fun individuals who have implemented the STEM Premier platform in their schools, districts, and counties.

In June, we heard from Dr. Sean Alford, Superintendent of the Aiken County Public School District, who gave us his take on STEM Premier from an administrator’s point-of-view. This month, we want to shine the spotlight on someone who works directly with students to help them develop their professional plans and goals.

Tashiba Pearson is a passionate and dedicated educator, and a big fan of STEM Premier. Let’s see what she has to say about implementing STEM Premier in her school.

                                    Tashiba Pearson                        Career Development Facilitator                      York Comprehensive High School                                 York, South Carolina

                                    Tashiba Pearson

                       Career Development Facilitator

                     York Comprehensive High School

                                York, South Carolina

Tell us about your role with the school or district that you are involved with.
As the Career Development Facilitator (CDF), it is my role to prepare students for the workforce. I do this through career assessments, resume and cover letter writing, exposing students to non-traditional careers, and implementing career events and programming.

How did you get into education? What drew you to the profession?
I decided to get into education because I wanted to help students prepare for their future. My current role as a CDF allows me to work directly with students on job coaching and preparing them for the workforce.

What is your favorite thing about education?
My favorite thing about education is that it gives me an opportunity to partner with students and help them achieve their goals. I recognize that I don’t necessarily know what is best for any individual student. Success is when a student allows me to work as a team with them to reach their goals.

Tell us about your school!
York Comprehensive High School (YCHS) is an amazing school located in York, SC, which is a picturesque upcountry town in one of the largest historic districts in the United States. Located near both Charlotte NC and Rock Hill SC, the benefits of small town life mingle with the opportunities that larger cities provide. We have over 1600 students at our school. Students at YCHS are fortunate in that our technology center, Floyd D. Johnson, is housed in the same building.  Students at YCHS are able to take Advanced Placement, Honors Courses and Dual Credit courses.

How is STEM Premier helping/will help your school or district?
STEM Premier came to YCHS in March 2017 to roll out their platform in our school. Since that time, I have been contacted by businesses who are using STEM Premier to recruit students for positions with immediate openings. STEM Premier has given students a platform that allows them to connect with local employers and colleges.

Any neat stories so far?                                                                                                  I had a student come to my office and show me his STEM Premier app on his phone. He was very excited to show me that his profile had been viewed by a local company. The next day this student informed me that his profile was now being followed by this company. The student is a senior who will be graduating in May and his next step is to enter the workforce. STEM Premier allowed this student to directly connect with a potential employer and now he is one step closer to securing a career before graduating high school.

How did you implement STEM Premier? Are there any suggestions you would have for  other schools on how to best implement STEM Premier?
At YCHS we implemented STEM over a two-day period. We pre-assigned students to computer labs and facilitated rotating students in and out of the lab. STEM Premier staff led the roll-out and helped students to create profiles. We printed transcripts and gave them to students so they would have accurate information to enter into their profile.

My suggestion to other schools would be to “organize, organize, organize.” Rollout went smoothly at YCHS because we pre-assigned students to labs, we planned for how long students would be in the lab. We made a spreadsheet outlining which lab students were assigned to. We also had administration standing in the halls helping to direct students to computer labs.

What is your favorite part of the system?
My favorite part of the system is the Red Kite area. I love how accessible it makes scholarships. I often hear students say “I didn’t apply because I didn’t know about that scholarship” or “I wasn’t sure if I qualified”. This area eliminates those problems because it pre-populates scholarships that the student is qualified for.

What has your experience been with the STEM Premier team?
The STEM Premier staff who came to YCHS and helped with the rollout of STEM Premier were absolutely AMAZING. They were fun and energetic and the students responded well to them. It was evident that they were not trying to “sell” us on a product or system. They were passionate about STEM Premier and the ways it could benefit YCHS students. Prior to implementiation, they were all very helpful and were always available to answer any questions we had. I have seen their staff in the community at different events and they are like family now. I can always call on anyone on their team and get an immediate response.

What is the future impact that STEM Premier will have on your school or district?
STEM Premier will help YCHS students display their talents and academic success on a platform that will lead to job offers and connections with colleges and schools. STEM Premier will help students graduate with job offers in hand.

STEM Premier Top 100 Student Honored at HOSA International Leadership Conference

Our friends at HOSA-Future Health Professionals recently held their HOSA International Leadership Conference last month. The Orlando, Florida event marked a momentous and successful year for HOSA as their membership grew to 218,000 individuals!

Perhaps more importantly, the conference also provided an opportunity for HOSA to award $96,000 in scholarship support to dozens of deserving students from across the country. These recipients will become our nation’s next generation of doctors, nurses, technicians, and scientists. HOSA members apply for the National HOSA Scholarships through STEM Premier. This means that every applicant and recipient is represented on STEM Premier's platform.  

Although all of the recipients are doubtlessly commendable, we would like to throw a special shout-out to Sydney Bertram from Columbia, South Carolina. Sydney was honored by HOSA with a $1,000 scholarship sponsored by STEM Premier. 

As a two-time STEM Premier Top 100 student, Sydney has been in our spotlight before.  However, her further accomplishments only reinforce our belief that she will one day make her mark on the field of healthcare. She recently committed to attend Clemson University and was also accepted by the University of Virginia and UNC-Chapel Hill. We wish her the best of luck as a Tiger! Congratulations, Sydney!

STEM Premier Announces Partnership with Penn College

To be successful, you have to work with the best. That’s why we are excited to announce our newest partnership. Pennsylvania College of Technology, in collaboration with UGI Utilities Inc., will be using the STEM Premier platform to enhance their STEM recruitment and job placement efforts.

 Pennsylvania College of Technology - also known as Penn College - is a public institution located in Williamsport, PA providing comprehensive, hands-on technical education at the baccalaureate and associate degree levels. After establishing a strong national reputation for workforce development, it became an affiliate institution of Penn State University in 1989. The College currently boasts an enrollment of 5,500 students and a 95% graduate placement rate.

 What makes Penn College a national leader in applied technology education is the commitment to their core values: an emphasis on hands-on education, a student-centered environment, strong business and industry partnerships, and a diverse community built on respect. STEM Premier plans to contribute to these values.   

 “The STEM Premier partnership will be a tremendous asset for both prospective and current students and serve as a valuable tool for employers recruiting our students,” said Carolyn R. Strickland, vice president for enrollment management/associate provost. “As a national leader in applied technology education, we are acutely aware that the workforce needs an influx of STEM talent. Partnering with STEM Premier will help us identify and nurture that talent.”

 “STEM Premier is honored to help foster this partnership between two premier institutions like Pennsylvania College of Technology and UGI,” says STEM Premier Co-Founder John Welch, “to assist students in connecting with employers to not only find a job, but more importantly a career!”

STEM Premier Connections: How Cummins Found Cody

We’re about connecting students, schools, and businesses in powerful ways that enhance the success of everyone involved. It’s what we do.

We also like to highlight these stories so that others can see the power of these connections, and catch a glimpse of what STEM Premier can do for them.

This week, we want to tell you the story of Cody Corneglio from Peru, Illinois, and how STEM Premier inspired him to dramatically change his future plans and find a new “family.”

Cody’s STEM Premier story began shortly after completing the ACT Test. He received an email from ACT inviting him to create a free STEM Premier account so that he could share his test scores - along with his other accomplishments - with hundreds of businesses, schools, and organizations who may be looking for someone just like him.

And that’s exactly what happened.

Cummins Turbo Technologies, a STEM Premier client, was interested in identifying and recruiting talented students for their nation-wide apprenticeship program. With STEM Premier, Cummins was able to identify the right fit for their program and message candidates whose interests and skills matched up with the opportunity. Cody was among them. 

Although Cody had heard of Cummins, he had no idea they had a local presence or about this program, which would provide participants with full-time employment, benefits, and financial assistance towards a college degree.

Like most students his age, Cody already had plans to attend college immediately after graduating from high school. However, after he received a direct message from Cummins inquiring whether he’d be interested in their program, he immediately jumped at the opportunity.

Now, he is enjoying working with Cummins, especially the career flexibility and encouragement they provide for their employees. “They are also like a big family,” Cody explains, “and everyone supports each other.”

In fact, he plans to stay at Cummins for the long haul, hoping to one day be in a management position with the organization. 

“I am truly grateful that STEM Premier made the opportunity I have possible,” he says.

Read more about Cody in his own words below.

Something you wouldn't know about me is...I really enjoy jigsaw puzzles. I live a fast-paced life and they give me an opportunity to relax.

For fun I like to...work with my hands. I will work on anything, but my passion is cars. I am currently in the middle of doing a frame off restoration on my truck and building a motor for it.

If I could meet anyone in the world it would be...Paul Walker. He was the inspiration for my interest in cars, and he was a great person all around. I was devastated that he was taken from us so soon.

The best teacher I ever had was...my high school physics teacher Mr. Fess. He always had good advice and valuable opinions to offer, and would support anything I wanted to do.

The last app I downloaded was...the Realtor.com app because I like to see what is available in my area and get ideas for the kind of place I am going to look for when I move.

In ten years I see myself...working at Cummins, possibly in a management position.

My greatest dream is to...own a lot of property with a small lake that I could enjoy with my family.

The thing I like the most about STEM Premier is...it gives students the chance to get their name out there and find opportunities they would not know about otherwise.

STEM Premier Spotlight: Ujwala Pamidimukkala

It’s always a pleasure keeping up with our STEM Premier student users. The best part is that there are always success stories to highlight.

 Our latest spotlight is on Ujwala Pamidimukkala, a senior at Columbus North High School in Indiana. Ujwala  - one of our 2017 STEM Premier Top 100 -  was recently named as one of the winners of Indiana’s inaugural Governor's STEM Team award.

 As one of four winners from over one hundred applications, Ujwala’s award represents the “Science” in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. And deservedly so. She is highly involved with HOSA - Future Health Professionals, and she placed first in both the Medical Math and Pharmacy Tech categories at Indiana’s HOSA state competition.

 Additionally, Ujwala is an AP Scholar with Distinction, President of her school’s Spanish Club, and a member of her high school tennis team. She has already committed to Vanderbilt, where she plans to major in molecular biology and chemistry.

 We caught with Ujwala to hear a little bit more about her in her own words. Here’s what she had to say!

Something you wouldn't know about me is...I follow more golden retrievers than people on Instagram

For fun, I like to….cook all sorts of food from around the world, but I especially love to make desserts.

If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, I would want to meet…Joe Biden because we have a mutual love of ice cream and Ray Ban sunglasses.

The best teacher I’ve ever had was/is….Mr. Dale Nowlin because he's an amazing math teacher and friend

The last app I downloaded on my phone was…Netflix (I LOVE to watch Friends!)

After high school, my next step is...studying molecular biology and chemistry on the pre-med track at Vanderbilt University.

In ten years, I see myself….going through residency and other training to become a cardiovascular surgeon.

My greatest dream is...to positively touch as many lives as I can through a career in cardiovascular surgery.

The thing I like about STEM Premier most is...it is a great place to display all of my credentials and to connect with amazing opportunities.

 Thanks Ujwala! We wish you the best of luck as you pursue your dreams at Vanderbilt!