The inaugural STE[a]M Connect Conference, dedicated to adding the Arts to the academic disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), will be held Friday, March 28, 9 am to 5:30 pm, at Irwin M. Jacobs Qualcomm Hall (5775 Morehouse Drive, San Diego, CA 92121).
The conference is expected to attract more than 500 professional educators and administrators who have embraced the STE[a]M integrative concept, that of melding left-brain convergent thinking with right-brain divergent thinking.
UC San Diego Extension holds a trademark for STE[a]M, for which the small [a] refers to inclusion of the Arts.
“Brains come with two sides for a reason,” said Ed Abeyta, PhD, director of K-16 programs at UC San Diego Extension. “They need each other. One reasons, the other feels. And what happens when they work together is magical.”
Ed Abeyta, Director of K-16 Progams, UC San Diego Extension
STE[a]M was created in 2012 as a collaborative effort between UC San Diego Extension and KDR PR, a San Diego-based public relations firm. As such, it became the first integrated STEA[a]M network based in Southern California.
Last year, the program was introduced at 12 middle schools and high schools in San Diego County and Orange County. More are expected to be added for the 2014-15 academic calendar.
“This first conference marks a significant milestone for our concept of a well-rounded academic curriculum,” added Abeyta. “With STE[a]M, our emphasis is always on the educational ideal of the whole-minded student, one who’s equipped with the skills and imagination to meet new workplace challenges.”
Expected participants include pre-K-16 educators, administrators, arts and nonprofit leaders, scientific research experts, business leaders and regional policymakers.
Sponsored by Qualcomm, event partners include CONNECT; SEAD (Network for Science, Engineering, Arts & Design); San Diego Opera; Arts for All; Arts Orange County; Biocom; the Art of Science Learning Center; Steam Carnival; San Diego Festival of Science & Engineering; San Diego STEM Collaboratory; Create CA; and GGI (George Greenstein Institute).