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Making Project Based Learning Authentic

Jim Vanides, Education Program Manager, Sustainability & Social Innovation at Hewlett-Packard, makes a case for project-based learning that is tangible, relevant, and authentic in a blog post on Tech Trends. Referring to the concept as "STEM(+) for Good," Vanides defines it further as learning that engages students in the challenge of finding solutions to real-world challenges and problems. "After all, high tech companies are not looking to hire students who only know how to solve the 'problems at the end of the chapter,'" Vanides writes. "Corporations and communities need graduates who can think, create, and innovate. STEM(+) students who are ready to solve REAL problems – those that have yet to be solved, or even questions that have yet to be asked – are the students who are most prepared and will be most sought after." What existing programs and projects exemplify STEM(+) for Good? Vanides points to several in his blog post, including The Challenge of Water Quality project, Engineering Projects in Community Service, and the Center for Digital Inclusion.

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