Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS) is partnering with Miami-Dade County (MDC) in launching a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Mentorship Program. This initiative seeks to raise awareness among female students about STEM careers for young women in Miami-Dade County.
“This mentoring program exemplifies how collaborating with experts in their respective industries can engage students in various work-based learning opportunities,” said M-DCPS Superintendent Dr. Jose L. Dotres. “This program has the added value of getting young women interested in STEM fields they may have otherwise overlooked.”
Through this program, female high school students will be matched with women in MDC government, who are in STEM fields, to mentor the students. The M-DCPS students would shadow these county employees to get a better perspective of their jobs and gain an innate knowledge of the variety of STEM careers available.
"We hope that providing more girls with these types of opportunities will translate to interest in County careers in those areas in the future, thus creating more equity for women in STEM fields in Miami-Dade County," said MDC Mayor Daniella Levine Cava.
MDC has a vast array of fields students can gain work experience in. Some examples include computer software engineers, computer systems analysts, engineers, accountants, biologists and chemists.
“Students get to work in their desired profession and gain the opportunity to observe both the positives and negatives of the job before making a career choice. This experience will help them make a more focused decision when choosing a career pathway,” said Dr. Lupe Ferran Diaz, executive director of the M-DCPS Department of Career and Technical Education.
Already more than 300 students from 13 schools did participate in a videoconference with county employees from the police, seaport, information technology and bond administration departments.
The M-DCPS and MDC “Next Level STEM” mentoring program includes M-DCPS students from 19 schools who engaged with their mentors via sessions and interviews that will lead to opportunities for these students to work during the Summer Youth Internship Program this summer. Then the “Next Level STEM” mentoring program will resume in the fall.
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