Bridgeport, CT - Each year students from Housatonic Community College (HCC) enjoy the opportunity to travel internationally and earn college credit. This year, amid Coronavirus, scholars went to Honolulu, HI where they presented at the 10th annual STEM-STEAM and Education Conference.
In an effort to stimulate competitiveness and the nation’s future economic prosperity, the conference focused on education in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math (STEAM). Students from HCC presented to the group on the topic of sustaining STEM/STEAM on a community college campus.
Housatonic Community College boasts a STEAM Center of Excellence and provides robust STEAM program offerings. Currently, HCC students can choose from more than 70 associate degree or certificate options within those disciplines. Through active hands-on learning, students build skills to advance their qualifications and support movement to higher education and better-paying jobs.
The conference presentation discussed six core components to successful implementation of STEM/STEAM programming, including cross-discipline learning. The creation of a STEAM task force, administrative support, events and programs, funding resources, and training were all detailed as vital to the program’s overall success. A paper on the subject by HCC Dean of Academic Affairs Robin Avant is being published.
Housatonic’s global experience includes class meetings, presentations, lectures, and discussions related to history, language, art, cultural norms and practices, as well as on-site visits, blogging and trip reflections.
“The most beautiful aspect of this global exploration is the direct student impact. Our Housatonic students often do not have the opportunity to leave the community, but through this experience we are building global awareness and global citizenship,” said Avant.
The next HCC global experience will take students to Paris, Provence and Barcelona during the summer of 2022. In the past, student groups have gone to Spain, Costa Rica, Africa, Italy and Greece. Sikorsky-Lockheed Martin, Pitney Bowes and Avangrid are strong supporters of HCC’s STEAM programs and ensuring that students pursuing careers in this field are exposed to exceptional learning experiences that will help them to grow and thrive.
“This experience truly lives up to our motto that Housatonic Community College students can stay close but go far,” said Avant.
Housatonic Community College is the only community college in the nation to offerCarnegie STEM Excellence Pathway Training, a professional development strategic planning process offered to improve schools’ STEM education initiatives. Additionally, the college is a partner in the Greater Bridgeport STEM Learning Ecosystem.