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Inquiry First.

National Museum of Natural History - IMG 1966Boston Museum of Science president and director Yannis N. Miaoulis has a nice piece in  US News & World Report about the importance of museums to STEM success.  "Science centers can be a powerful resource for teachers in STEM fields," he writes.  "School curricula traditionally focus more on the natural world, not the technological one. But it is the human-made world that facilitates 95 percent of daily experience."

More at usnews.com

PhotobucketThe 2012 Massachusetts State High School Science & Engineering Fair will take place Thursday, May 3 - Saturday, May 5 at MIT.  Students in grades 9-12 from all Massachusetts public, private and parochial schools -- as well as home-schooled students -- are eligible to enter through their schools.

The Massachusetts Middle School Science and Engineering Fair will be held Saturday, June 2, 2012 at Worcester Technical High School.

How the High School Fair Works
Each school may send two outstanding student projects directly to the Massachusetts State Science & Engineering Fair (MSSEF) State Fair: One individual and/or one team project (2 or 3 student members to each team).  In addition, the top... Read More

An interesting chart based on 2010 census data shows how various college majors stack up in terms of career income potential.  For each major listed, data includes unemployment percent, popularity ranking, and average earnings at the 25th, 50th, and 75th percentiles.  It's easy to access engineering and science data by clicking the buttons in the "Suggested Searches" area.
Via graphicsweb.wsj.com

Increasingly, the demands of state tests for proficiency in math and reading seem to be pushing subjects like science, art, and social studies aside, according to a survey commissioned by Washington-based research organization Common Core. "During the past decade, our public schools have focused—almost exclusively—on reading and math instruction," said Common Core president and executive director Lynn Munson. "As a result, we are denying our students the complete education they deserve and the law demands." Specifically, the study reveals that while art and music predictably have taken the hardest hit, foreign languages, social studies, phys ed, and science are right behind them, with science getting 27% less time than it used to.
Via blogs.edweek.org

Women CEOs from several US companies traveled to Capitol Hill on Monday to deliver a message to a group of female lawmakers: We've got science and technology jobs to fill; where are the qualified candidates?  A big part of the problem, panelists agreed, is a lack of job applicants with adequate skills in STEM fields. For example, Lisa Hook, CEO of Sterling-Va-based Neustar Inc., a telecommunications company, pointed to a solution.  “We need a lot of federal assistance in encouraging children to go into STEM, we need to make it accessible and available starting in the ninth grade,” she said.

via abcnews.go.com

During Computer Science Education Week (December 4-10, 2011), here are several interesting facts about computer science (from CSEdWeek.org):

  • Five of the top ten fastest growing jobs will be in computing-related fields ( i.e., computer software engineer jobs expected to grow 45% over the next five to seven years).
  • Only 17% of AP computer science test-takers in 2008 were women, although women represented 55% of all AP test-takers.
  • By 2018, current government projections show that more than 800,000 high-end computing jobs will be created in the economy, making it one of the fastest growing occupational fields.

more at www.csedweek.org

As part of a community outreach project, recent high school graduate Kevin Temmer produced an original animated video to teach students how to prepare for science fairs. Enjoy!

Biotechnology veteran -- and MSSEF board member -- Michael S. Wyzga has assumed the position of CEO at Cambridge, MA-based Radius Health, following a 13-year career at Genzyme. While serving as Genzyme's Executive Vice President, Finance, and CFO, Mike led the $20.1 billion sale of Genzyme to Sanofi last April -- the second-largest acquisition ever in the industry.

In his new role at Radius, Mike will drive corporate strategy and lead the advancement of Phase 3 osteoporosis drug BA058. “It is a great privilege to have been asked to lead Radius at this important point in the company’s evolution,” Mike said. “BA058 represents a unique opportunity to advance not just a best-in-class drug, but potentially a best-in-disease drug in the expanding osteoporosis market. BA058 has the potential to transform the treatment of osteoporosis and optimize outcomes based not only on its unique bone-building and safety attributes but on the development of the once-daily, short wear-time transdermal... Read More

Two new elements are making their debut on the periodic table. Element 114 is slated to be named "flerovium" (atomic symbol Fl), and element 116 has been tagged with the moniker "livermorium" (Lv). If you can think of other name ideas, now's your chance to voice them: The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry will take comments on the proposed names through April.  “We believe we have to let the world respond,” said chemistry union executive director Terry A. Renner. “It’s a desire to be fair and recognize everyone’s right to contribute as a scientist.”
Via www.nytimes.com

Applications for the 2012-2013 Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship Program are due on January 5, 2012.  From the Einstein Fellowship web site: "The Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship Program provides a unique professional development opportunity for accomplished K-12 educators in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to serve in the national education arena. Fellows spend eleven months working in a Federal agency or in a U.S. Congressional office, bringing their extensive knowledge and experience in the classroom to education program and/or education policy efforts."  Click this link to begin the application process.  Good luck!
Via science.energy.gov

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