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ENGINE of Central PA, a STEM Learning Ecosystem

Fund Type: Project
Regional Foundation: Greater Harrisburg Foundation

the purpose of the project shall be to educate the community about STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) by cross-sector partnerships in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

ENGINE of Central PA is one of the few university-led ecosystems to bring meaningful STEM research and innovations to K-12 education.
Empowering Next Generation of Innovators and Entrepreneurs (ENGINE) of Central PA, a project with the Foundation for Enhancing Communities (TFEC), 501(c)3, fiscal agent, led by Penn State University, and an executive leadership including Discovery Space of Central Pennsylvania, and the following intermediate units: Central IU 10, Tuscarora IU 11, Lancaster-Lebanon IU 13, Capital Area IU 15, and Schuylkill County IU 29. ENGINE of Central PA connects students, educators, families, and workforce partners; cultivates local, statewide, national and international partnerships; elevates STEM opportunities and resources; and creates a community of learners to be innovative problem-solvers and STEM leaders.
ENGINE of Central PA impacts 179,919 students and 11,000+ educators from central & south-central Pennsylvania from the following counties: Centre, Clearfield, Clinton, Cumberland, Dauphin, Fulton, Huntingdon, Juniata, Lebanon, Mifflin, Perry, and Schuylkill. The network has grown to 100+ partners/organizations publicly shared on the website and 400+ subscribers to our listserv. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, along with 15 federal funding agencies, depicts STEM Ecosystems as a strategic pathway towards success in achieving the goals for American STEM Education in The Progress Report of the Implementation of the Federal STEM Education Strategic Plan. The main goals for American STEM Education include 1) building strong foundations for STEM literacy; 2) increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEM; and 3) prepare the STEM workforce for the future.
To enhance innovation, entrepreneurship, and 21st century skills of critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication in Pennsylvania, ENGINE of Central PA is committed to:


Supporting youth leadership and voice to enrich school STEM culture and career awareness:  Chief Science Officers Program (CSO) prepares student leaders to facilitate STEM experiences in their schools and build regional partnerships to impact their student body. The International CSOs collaborate and are provided with the opportunity to meet annually with leaders of the National Science and Technology Council of the Executive Office of the President of the United States. Our goal is to support 125 CSOs across the 63 school districts within our ecosystem by 2024. A full year of support for one CSO is $600. Sponsor a CSO today! Chief Science Officers 2022 Summary


Providing equitable access to arts, makery, outdoor learning, science, student voice, and technology experiences for all students aligned to career demands in Pennsylvania: Remake Learning Days of Central PA with Remake Learning Days Across America is a festival for youth, families, teachers, and community to remake learning – including opportunities for students to obtain artifacts for their career portfolio through the Career Ready PA Backpack Challenge. Remake Learning Days Across America takes place annually in April and May. Please visit our sponsorship page to support Remake Learning Days in your neighborhood! Remake Learning Days 2022 Summary


Building a community focused on our future STEM workforce: Convenings, such as our School to Business Speed Dating events, are opportunities to bring together cross-sector partners such as business/industry, libraries, science and art centers/museums, parks, schools, and more will occur to learn, ideate, and implement solutions to enhance experiences to develop the future STEM workforce. The 100Kin10 Grand Challenges in STEM is used to help partners uncover the issues they can address in their work to develop solutions. Your generous donation can support our STEM Workforce Summits and School to Business Speed Dating events in our Central & South-Central PA communities. STEM Workforce Summit 2022 Summary