ACT

STEM Premier Spotlight: Texas

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The Rundown:

  • STEM Premier Student Accounts: 20,000

  • Male/Female User Split: Male - 41%, Female - 59%

  • Next Step:

    • College - 92%

    • Technical or Community College - 5%

    • Workforce/Military - 3%

  • Top High School Representation:

    • Manvel High School (Manvel)

    • Ball High School (Galveston)

    • Brazoswood High School (Clute)

    • Bel Air High School (El Paso)

    • DeBakey High School for Health Professions (Houston)

  • Top Career Interests:

    • Surgeons

    • Pediatricians

    • Mechanical Engineers

    • Registered Nurses

    • Aerospace Engineers

  • Top In-State College Interests:

    • University of Texas

    • Texas A&M University

    • Baylor University

    • Rice University

    • University of Houston

  • Top Out-of-State College Interests:

    • Stanford University

    • Harvard University

    • Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    • University of California - Berkeley

    • Johns Hopkins University

  • Number of Post-Secondary Student Users: 700

The last time we checked in with the Lone Star State, it had just over 3,000 student users. That number has since grown seven-fold to over 20,000! Texas also boasts nine of the 2018 STEM Premier Top 100!

Female student profiles in Texas outnumber males 59% to 41%, which continues to be encouraging news for a range of professions and industries historically considered to be dominated by men; healthcare and engineering are two of the state’s most popular career interests. In fact, nearly 1,700 female students in Texas are members of HOSA - Future Health Professionals.

But some of the most exciting news about Texas is the diversity of our student population. Nearly 10% of student users identify as first-generation students, and it is one of the only states where minority users (Hispanic/Latino) comprise the largest proportion of our users!

STEM Premier Spotlight: South Carolina

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The Rundown:

  • STEM Premier Student Accounts: 70,000

  • Male/Female User Split: Male - 48%, Female - 52%

  • Next Step:

    • College - 70%

    • Technical or Community College - 13%

    • Workforce/Military - 17%

  • Top High School Representation:

    • Cane Bay High School

    • Summerville High School

    • Goose Creek High School

    • Aiken High School

    • Fort Dorchester High School

  • Top Career Interests:

    • Registered Nurses

    • Mechanical Engineers

    • Nursing, Psychiatric, and Home Health Aides

    • Surgeons

    • Elementary, Middle, and High School Teachers

  • Top In-State College Interests:

    • Clemson University

    • University of South Carolina (Columbia)

    • College of Charleston

    • Coastal Carolina University

    • Winthrop University

  • Top Out-of-State College Interests:

    • Duke University

    • University of North Carolina

    • University of Georgia

    • North Carolina State University

    • Florida State University

  • Number of Post-Secondary Student Users: 1,500

It’s been nearly two years since our last spotlight on the state of South Carolina. And my how things have changed! The number of STEM Premier student users has grown exponentially since then, which means so too has our data and insight into this population of young talent.

Powered in large part by our relationship with SC Future Makers, over 50,000 students have joined our platform in the past two years to connect with schools, businesses, and organizations.

It’s true that much of our talent resides in the state’s larger metropolitan areas, but that’s to be expected. What has us totally pumped is how deeply the STEM Premier platform has reached every corner of the state. This enables every student to have a fair shake, whether they’re in Charleston or Chesterfield. And speaking of Chesterfield, we know 40 students there who are interested in becoming a classroom teacher. That’s breaking news for a state which is facing a critical teacher shortage!

STEM Premier Spotlight: Michigan

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Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 4,700+

  • Top College Interests: University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Wayne State University, Grand Valley State University

  • Top Intended Majors: Pre-Med, Nursing, Computer Science

We're heading up to the Wolverine State for our newest State Spotlight for a closer look at STEM Premier students in Michigan. The Great Recession of 2008 hit the state of Michigan especially hard, and 2009 found the state in a severe economic rut. However, Michigan has resiliently bounced back and is now the nation's seventh-fastest growing economy. 

The manufacturing legacy of Michigan lives on, as that industry still represents the largest portion of the state's economy. However, economist have noted that diversification has been one of the factors in helping lift Michigan out of the economic mud. The finance industry, comprising 18% of the state's economy, is right behind manufacturing's 19%. Unemployment in Michigan is currently at a 20-year low. 

Michigan’s largest population of STEM Premier students is located in and around Detroit - which happens to be the hometown of our fantastic partner, SME - with other sizable pockets around Grand Rapids, Lansing, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and Flint. However, STEM Premier students are all over the state including it's Northern tip in towns like Traverse City, and in the Upper Peninsula in places like Marquette. Its students tend to have their eyes on the healthcare industry as reflected by the number of related fields among their top career interests; many of them want to be nurses, surgeons, pediatricians, and healthcare support specialists. This is particularly true for STEM Premier user Onyewuchi Ndukwe, a rising high school senior from Detroit, who hopes to become an optometrist and one day return to her home country of Nigeria to create an organization which provides glasses and contact lenses. 

However, true to Michigan's economic legacy, mechanical engineering is also a top choice for the state's students. 

ACT’s 2017 Condition of STEM Report on Michigan indicates that 55% of Michigan’s high school seniors express an interest in STEM, which is above the national average. However, ACT warns, only 56 students who were assessed in the inventory indicated an interest in a career in math or science education. This indicates that the state may face a STEM educator shortage in the coming years. 

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

STEM Premier Spotlight: Oklahoma

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Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 3,500+
  • Top College Interests: University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, University of Central Oklahoma, University of Tulsa
  • Top Intended Majors: Nursing, Mechanical Engineering, Biology, Computer Science

April’s State Spotlight takes us to the Midwest and the Sooner State for a closer look at STEM Premier students in Oklahoma. The vast plains of Oklahoma may mislead you into believing that the state primarily is focused on agriculture, but that would be inaccurate.

The public sector currently comprises the largest portion of Oklahoma’s economy, accounting for roughly 16% of the state’s GDP in 2016. Outside of the government, mining, manufacturing, trade, and finance are Oklahoma’s predominant industries. Oklahoma’s economy has steadily grown over the past fifteen years, and now comprises a larger portion of the total U.S. economy than it did in 2002.

Oklahoma’s largest population of STEM Premier students is located in the state capitol of Oklahoma City, while other hubs exist in Tulsa and Norman. Its students tend to have their eyes on the healthcare industry as reflected by the number of related fields among their top career interests; many of them want to be nurses, surgeons, pediatricians, and healthcare support specialists.

ACT’s 2017 Condition of STEM Report on Oklahoma indicates that 47% of Oklahoma’s high school seniors express an interest in STEM, which is in line with the national average. However, the report notes, only 16% of students had both an expressed interest in STEM as well as an ACT Interest Inventory score which indicated proficiency in a STEM field. This may foreshadow a dearth of in-state STEM talent in the coming years; something STEM employers may want to take note of.

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

ACT Releases 2017 Report on The Condition of STEM

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This week, our partner ACT released their 2017 edition of The Condition of STEM report.

Using comprehensive data gathered from the U.S. high school graduating class of 2017, ACT compiles and organizes the report in order to analyze the current landscape of student interest and achievement in STEM. The report is designed to assist stakeholders - such as educational organizations and industry-leaders -  to better understand this landscape and drive their own efforts to improve educational and workplace success.

This year’s report highlights several key findings and trends; some encouraging and some worrisome. For example, ACT’s data reveals that the oft-referenced STEM gender gap continues to persist. It also finds that physical geography plays a critical role in STEM achievement; a phenomenon we delved into last month.

However, for each of these areas of concern, ACT features “promising practices” gleaned from states, nonprofits, businesses and other organizations who are committed to making a difference. One such practice featured is the 100kin10  designed to address the critical shortage of STEM teachers in our nation’s schools.

The report concludes by providing several policy recommendations to be considered by government leaders, such as establishing loan-forgiveness programs for STEM educators.

In addition to the overall report, The Condition of STEM is also examined on a state-by-state basis. In fact, these are the same reports which we reference in our state spotlight blog series; New York was our most recent!

As part of our collaboration with ACT in compiling the 2017 Condition of STEM, each state report contains an example of a STEM Premier student user residing there.

This year’s report is yet another example of ACT’s commitment to driving STEM success in the U.S.

A New Year Brings New Possibilities

Yet another year is upon us, and that means new resolutions and new possibilities. As we reflect on 2017, we are encouraged by the many milestones STEM Premier has achieved.

As 2018 begins, the STEM Premier platform is now home to more than 315,000 students across the nation, representing all fifty states.

We have forged new partnerships with highly-respected organizations such as the National Society of High School Scholars, a prestigious international academic organization, and Precision Exams, a visionary testing partner dedicated to promoting industry-aligned CTE exams.

We have taken our existing partnerships to the next level, such a our collaboration with Future Business Leaders of America, who now has official FBLA digital badges available on STEM Premier. We’ve also continued our great relationship with ACT, who has made STEM Premier the only app where talent can request and earn their ACT WorkKeys Digital Badge, an accolade which indicates that the recipient has earned their National Career Readiness Certificate.

Many fantastic colleges such as Georgia Southern University, Pittsburg State University, and Charleston Southern University have joined the STEM Premier platform to find and recruit talent to their respective institutions.

We’ve connected students to great companies like Cummins Turbo Diesel, BMW, Boeing, and many others. In fact, as of 2018, over 270 colleges and companies have joined STEM Premier!

We know 2018 holds much more in store for everyone involved with STEM Premier, and we wish our students and partners a prosperous and successful new year!

Tallo 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 Tallo can do for them.

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

Cody’s Tallo story began shortly after completing the ACT Test. He received an email from ACT inviting him to create a free Tallo 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 Tallo client, was interested in identifying and recruiting talented students for their nation-wide apprenticeship program. With Tallo, 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 Tallo 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 Tallo is...it gives students the chance to get their name out there and find opportunities they would not know about otherwise.

A Professional HUD: STEM Premier's Student Dashboard

If you’re an aircraft pilot, you are familiar with an HUD.

For everyone else, the acronym may be unfamiliar, but the concept shouldn’t be. An HUD, or Heads-Up Display, is an apparatus which presents important data to the user of a certain technology - a fighter jet, for example - without requiring them to take their eyes off of what’s in front of them.

When you’re flying at 800 miles per hour, you can imagine why that would be useful!

STEM Premier's Student Dashboard works in the same way.

Both at the secondary and collegiate level, students have a lot going on in their lives. They have tests to study for, homework to do, and projects to complete. And that just describes their academic lives! They also want to make time for friends, family, sports, hobbies, and other activities.

Simply put, students don’t have a lot of time to think about their academic and professional futures. Perhaps that’s why big state schools with strong brand-awareness never fail to attract their fair share of applicants. It could also explain why certain high-prestige professions, such as law and healthcare, dominate student interest surveys (on the 2015 CIRP Freshman Survey, an astounding 27.4% of incoming college freshman identified themselves as either pre-law or pre-med).

STEM Premier’s Student Dashboard is tailor-designed for each student on the STEM Premier platform. Using data from the user’s personal profile, the dashboard compiles and aggregates vital information for each student as they navigate their hectic lives at 800 mph - just like an HUD system!

When a student logs onto STEM Premier, their Dashboard is the first thing they see. Here’s what they’ll find:

They’ll find how their standardized test scores - such as their ACT score -  stack up against other users, which may prompt them to try for a higher score and broaden their opportunities.

They’ll find the “Explore Organizations” module, which will connect them with schools and businesses who match up well with their educational and career interests.

They’ll find financial aid opportunities powered by Redkite, which matches students to certain scholarship opportunities based on their STEM Premier profile information.  

In other words, STEM Premier students will have information placed at their fingertips which used to have taken hours of research to compile. That’s the whole point of an HUD. At STEM Premier, we don’t want students to have to take their eyes off the windshield to figure out where they’re going.

We want to help them know exactly where they’re headed. While still going full-throttle.

 

ACT Releases Condition of STEM 2016 Report

A new year brings with it new resolutions, new opportunities, and new challenges.

It also brings new insights.

Recently, our friends at ACT released the 2016 edition of their National Condition of STEM Report.

The report compiles data from the nationwide administration of the ACT® test to the high school graduating class of 2016 - taken by a record 64% of students - along with it’s accompanying ACT Interest Inventory, which measures each ACT test taker’s interest in different educational and occupational areas.

The Interest Inventory provides an opportunity for ACT to quantify the expressed interests of students (those which the students specifically identify themselves) in these areas as well as measured interests (based on answers to the Inventory’s questions). The results allow ACT to determine levels of interest in STEM fields as well as to compare the college readiness levels between these subsets of students.

So what did ACT find out in their Condition of STEM 2016 Report? Here are some of the highlights:

  • Students with an interest in STEM continue to show higher levels of college readiness than ACT-tested students as a whole.
  • Approximately half (48%) of ACT-tested U.S. graduates in the class of 2016 have expressed interest in STEM majors and careers. This level of interest has remained steady over the past five years.
  • Under-served learners have a high interest in STEM, but ACT STEM benchmark attainment lags far behind their peers.

Perhaps one of the most concerning stats from this year’s report is that only 1,258 students (less than 1% of the 2.1 million tested) had both an expressed and measured interest in becoming a math or science teacher. The lack of students interested in teaching STEM subjects to younger generations presents an alarming paradox for the future of STEM education in the U.S., and makes initiatives such as the 100Kin10 Network necessary.

Like we said, new years always bring new challenges. But STEM Premier and ACT are at the ready to transform these challenges into opportunities for today’s students and tomorrow’s professionals.

Read ACT’s National Condition of STEM 2016 Report.

STEM Premier Spotlight: Indiana

Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 1,600+
  • Top College Interests: Purdue University, Indiana University, Ball State University, Butler University, University of Notre Dame
  • Top Intended Majors: Computer Science, Pre-Medicine, Biology, Nursing

This week’s STEM Premier spotlight brings us to the Hoosier State, home of the world-famous Indianapolis 500 automobile race. Speaking of automobiles, we were proud to announce in September a fantastic partnership with Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana (TMMI) and Vincennes University who are utilizing the STEM Premier platform to recruit for TMMI’s Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) program; an education-to-work initiative billed as Indiana’s strongest supportive-manufacturing degree.

Indiana’s STEM Premier’s student base - which includes two hundred National Honor Society members - has a strong presence in the central part of the state. Approximately one-third of student members are located in and around the state’s capital of Indianapolis. However, the remainder of the student base is spread fairly equally; most notably in Ft. Wayne, South Bend, and the southeastern reaches of Chicago where the metropolis has crept across Indiana’s border. The top occupational interests of Indiana’s students include surgeons, mechanical engineers, and registered nurses.

ACT’s 2016 Condition of STEM Report on Indiana finds that the state’s student interest in STEM (52%) exceeds the national average (48%); a trend which is five years running. Of those students interested in the STEM fields, Medical Sciences (42%) and Engineering/Technology (24%) appear to be the most desirable areas.

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

STEM Premier Spotlight: Louisiana

Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 2,000+
  • Top College Interests: Louisiana State University, University of Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana Tech University, Tulane University
  • Top Intended Majors: Pre-Medicine, Chemical Engineering, Biology

We’re headed down to the bayou for this month’s STEM Premier Spotlight on the state of Louisiana. As a major oil and gas producer, it should be no surprise to see chemical engineering top the list of intended majors of STEM Premier student members in Louisiana.

Although a large proportion reside in the Baton Rouge and New Orleans, STEM Premier student members are distributed fairly evenly across the state. Shreveport and Ruston in the north as well as Lake Charles and Lafayette in the south boast a fair share as well. Alexandria - located centrally - is not far behind.

In addition to chemical engineering, the top career interests of Louisiana’s students include mechanical engineering, nursing, and pediatriatrics.

ACT’s 2015 Condition of STEM Report on Louisiana highlights some interesting trends for the Pelican State. Although student interest in STEM has outpaced the national average since 2011, it has also seen a steady drop from 55% to 51% in 2015. The highest levels of STEM interest are in the engineering (28%) and medical (47%) fields, both of which exceed the national average for those areas (25% and 42%, respectively).

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

STEM Premier Spotlight: Illinois

Quick Facts:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students: 3,500+
  • Top College Interests: University Of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign, Purdue University, University of Illinois at Chicago, Northwestern University
  • Top Intended Majors: Computer Science, Pre-Medicine, Mechanical Engineering

For this month’s STEM Premier Spotlight, we’re heading to the Midwest for a closer look at the state of Illinois. Home of reputable schools such as Northwestern University and the University of Chicago, the Prairie State’s STEM Premier’s student base includes an impressive 387 National Honor Society members.

Unsurprisingly, Illinois’ largest concentration of STEM Premier students is located in Chicago and its suburbs. Other notable areas of student presence are found in Peoria, Bloomington, and Springfield.

The top occupational interests of Illinois’ students include mechanical engineering, biological science, and computer programming.

ACT’s 2015 Condition of STEM Report on Illinois has shown a slight decrease in STEM interest among the state’s students over the past five years. This decrease seems to be caused by a shift of interest areas. While interest in medical and natural sciences has lessened, the opposite holds true for interest in computer science and mathematics (a 2% increase since 2011), and engineering (a 1% increase). This same trend is reflected in the Top Intended Majors of Illinois’ STEM Premier students.

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

STEM Premier Spotlight: California

Quick Stats:

  • STEM Premier Student Members in CA: 3,100+
  • Average SAT: 1781
  • Average ACT: 29
  • Average GPA: 3.67 (On a 4.0 scale)

It should come as no surprise that California - the home Google, Apple, and hundreds of other tech companies - is a hotspot for STEM talent. The 3,000+ California students on our platform currently outperform the STEM Premier average ACT (27) and GPA (3.58).

Although high tech companies currently get most of the the spotlight, businesses from all industries call The Golden State home. Historically separated from the industrial production of the Eastern and Midwest states, California developed out of necessity a complex and diversified economy over the past 150 years. The result is one of the country’s - and world’s - largest economies. A breakdown of the state’s economy indicates a robust presence from manufacturing and utilities to education and healthcare.

Within the state, STEM Premier’s students can be found as far north as Eureka all the way down to sunny San Diego. The majority of our students are located in the San Francisco/San Jose, Los Angeles, Bakersfield, San Diego, and Sacramento. Their top occupational interests include biological scientists, surgeons, mechanical engineers, and computer scientists. Similar to other states, female students in California are well represented on our platform, making up 56% of STEM Premier’s students within the state.

ACT notes that overall student interest in STEM areas has increased 4% between 2011 and 2015 and STEM interest in California (52%) currently outpaces the national average of 49%. Despite living in the shadows of tech giants, surprisingly few of California’s students have expressed interest in computer science and mathematics, matching the national interest rate of 11% in 2015. Most seem to be drawn towards the medical and healthcare field, with an expressed interest rate of 33%.

Interested in learning more about STEM in California? Check out ACT’s full report.

STEM Premier Attends STEM Solutions Conference

                                     STEM Premier Co-Founder Casey Welch at the STEM Solutions Conference

                                     STEM Premier Co-Founder Casey Welch at the STEM Solutions Conference

STEM Premier is on the move! Last month, we hit the road to visit the 2016 USA Science & Engineering Festival in our nation’s capital. We followed that up with a jaunt to Rock Hill, SC to drop in on Teen CEO Day. Our most recent excursion took us to Baltimore, MD where we exhibited at the U.S. News STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference.

This annual conference - now in its 5th year - brings together the brightest minds in business, academia and government not only to contribute key insights to the nationwide STEM debate; but also to ensure that STEM’s hard-won momentum is channeled into practical, self-sustaining strategies for inspiring, educating and hiring the diverse STEM workforce of tomorrow.

An all-star cast of speakers highlighted the conference and included Timothy Lawrence, Executive Director of SkillsUSA, Margaret Mannix, Executive Editor of U.S. News and World Report, and Dr. Jo Handelsman from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Attendees also heard from Vince Bertram, CEO of Project Lead the Way, one of our proud partners.

            Mary K. Diers and Steve Kappler, two of our good friends from ACT

            Mary K. Diers and Steve Kappler, two of our good friends from ACT

Amid the numerous exhibitors at the conference were our good friends and strategic partners ACT, and it was great getting to interact with their talented team for a couple of days. Other notable attendees at the conference included Northrop Grumman, Minorities in Energy Initiative, and BEST Robotics.

Of course, no trip to Baltimore is complete without a trip to Camden Yards, and so the STEM Premier team took a quick break to see the Orioles take on the Seattle Mariners!

STEM Premier at the 2016 USA Science & Engineering Festival

We recently attended the USA Science & Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C., and what a fantastic time we had. Attended by more than 300,000 students, teachers, and professionals, the Festival is a “who’s who” in the world of STEM. Hundreds of speakers, performers, and exhibitors - including STEM Premier - flock from across the country to be there. Add in representatives from hundreds of other academic institutions, government agencies, tech companies, museums, and community organizations, and we’re talking about quite the event!

It would be quite fitting to say that we were at the center of the STEM universe.

Our team spent three incredible days engaging students and teaching them about STEM Premier’s platform, and providing guidance on how they can best connect with schools and professions which align with their interests. Amidst such a bustling environment, it was no challenge at all explaining the importance of our motto “don’t go unseen.”   

A few of our other favorite observations and takeaways:

  • Always a bonus, we got to exhibit right next to our fabulous partners at ACT while we engaged the United States’ emerging STEM talent.
  • We loved Oracle Academy showing off their versatility and teaching students how to code on-site. Talk about a hands-on exhibit!
  • Our stylish shades were a big hit with everyone who stopped by our exhibit!

All in all, the Festival was a great experience for everyone. We look forward to attending next year!

ACT and STEM Premier: Creating Possibilities

Most people have heard about the ACT® test – the largest and most accepted college admissions test administered all over the country.

However, the ACT is actually just one facet of what ACT, the nonprofit organization that designs the test, does for individuals around the world.

Since 1959, ACT has offered assessments, research, information, and program management services to support education and workforce development. Trusted by educators and policymakers, its services extend far beyond collegiate entrance testing. ACT WorkKeys® assists job seekers in showing their readiness for particular jobs and employers in hiring, training, and retaining a strong and stable workforce. ACT Engage® measures student academic behaviors to help educators determine which of their students are at risk academically. And these programs represent only a portion of ACT’s offerings.

ACT’s reputation speaks for itself. Its commitment to empower individuals with the information and insights to make better decisions has allowed the ACT to become the most widely taken college entrance test in the US. In the class of 2015, nearly six out of ten high school graduates took the assessment.

ACT’s mission is “helping people achieve education and workplace success,” which makes it a natural partner for STEM Premier. The relationship between the two organizations began in 2014. After every test, ACT sends an email to those students interested in STEM informing them of the opportunities which STEM Premier provides. Then, through STEM Premier, students can qualify for scholarships that are funded through a joint effort of both organizations. Students can also build their own STEM Premier profiles in order to be noticed by educational institutions and businesses.

STEM Premier is proud to call ACT our partner as we seek together to advance educational and career success for students everywhere. ACT and STEM Premier: Creating Possibilities

STEM Premier Spotlight: South Carolina

Students on the STEM Premier platform reside all across the U.S. (even Alaska and Hawaii!). This means that STEM Premier students not only represent talent and skills across a vast array of interest areas, but they also represent a cross-section of the U.S. itself. The result is a geographically, culturally, and educationally diverse population that makes each state unique. 

We’ll regularly feature spotlights on different states around the U.S. and the students who reside within their borders. What better place to start than STEM Premier’s home, South Carolina?

Quick Stats:

  • STEM Premier Secondary-Level Students in SC: 7,000
  • Average SAT: 1620
  • Average ACT: 24
  • Average GPA: 3.10 (On a 4.0 scale)

Boasting nearly 1,000 students with GPAs of 4.0 or higher, South Carolina’s talent base is rich and diverse. With STEM Premier partner The Boeing Company having a strong presence in the state, it’s no surprise that aerospace technology ranks as one of the top interest areas for South Carolina’s students. Other areas of high interest include mechanical engineering and computer programming.

Naturally, STEM Premier students are concentrated in South Carolina's larger cities Charleston, Columbia, Greenville, and Aiken, but they also have a notable presence in Walterboro, Beaufort, Myrtle Beach, and Spartanburg.

According to ACT, the percentage of ACT-tested South Carolina students with an interest in STEM is relatively high at 52%, which outpaces the national expressed interest of 49%.

Interested in learning more about STEM in South Carolina? Check out ACT’s full report.