Governor Abbott, TWC Awards Nearly $1.3 Million to Governor’s Summer Merit Program | Texas Governor’s Office

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July 7, 2022 | Austin | Press release

Governor Greg Abbott today awarded 17 grants totaling nearly $1.3 million to be distributed through the Governor’s Summer Excellence Program to Texas universities and community colleges for summer camps for young people in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Awarded by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), these funds will provide scholarships to 2,231 students between the ages of 14 and 21 to attend STEM camps to prepare them for future high-skilled and in-demand jobs.

The Governor’s Summer Merit Program introduces Texas youth to one or more of Texas’ six industrial hubs: Advanced Technology and Manufacturing, Aerospace and Defense, Biotechnology and Life Sciences, Information Technology and Computing, Refining petroleum and chemicals, and energy. Texas is expected to add more than 300,000 STEM occupations through 2028, according to data projections from TWC’s Labor Market Information Department. Several camps are designed to encourage young women and minorities to pursue their studies and careers in STEM.

“Texas is a world leader in science and technology, and we will continue to provide the best opportunities for young Texans to engage in STEM,” Governor Abbott said. “Developing a highly skilled and diverse workforce for tomorrow would not be possible without investing in Texas’ most valuable asset: the students in our classrooms today. Through the Governor’s Summer Merit Program, our universities and community colleges will provide life-changing educational experiences for the next generation of engineers, mathematicians, software developers and more in the Lone Star State. .”

“Each of Texas’ 182,000 STEM job postings represents a valuable opportunity for a Texan to connect to a life of success,” said TWC President Bryan Daniel. “TWC-supported youth initiatives, including the Governor’s Summer Merit Program, help Texas’ future workforce discover these exciting opportunities and build a talent pipeline for Texas industry. .”

“The Governor’s Summer Merit Program takes what would normally be a $700 camp for a student and delivers it for free. This is how we find our next programmers, scientists and engineers,” said the commissioner of the TWC representing Labor, Julian Alvarez. “From game programming to drones and artificial intelligence, these camps focus on the future.”

“Texas is home to more Fortune 500 companies than any other state, and these Texas employers want a workforce that is talented, flexible, balanced and ready to innovate,” said TWC Commissioner representing employers Aaron Demerson. “When I talk to employers, they express their interest in finding more qualified employees. STEM training is a valuable tool and starting point to help build the workforce these employers need. »

The 17 Summer Excellence Program scholarship recipients are:

  • Lone Star College – Tomball, $55,723 – the college provides 80 students with experience in computer coding, robotics, electronics and programming; design, build and program a robotic creature; and programming languages ​​used in the real world (eg, PBASIC programming).
  • Southern Methodist University, $99,226 – the university hosts 200 students for camps based on the NASA Perseverance Mission to Mars. Each cohort will split into four student teams: Drone Team, Rover Team, Rocket Team, and Landing Team. Each team will work with industry mentors to prepare for a simulated remote mission to Mars.
  • University of Texas at Austin, $100,000 – UT Austin hosts 326 students with multiple camps, including the UT Computer Science Academy for Women. The GeoFORCE Texas program takes students on spectacular geological excursions. My Introduction to Engineering (MITE) participants learn about engineering through hands-on team projects. The Women Engineers at The University of Texas (WEatUT) camp offers the opportunity to explore engineering through hands-on projects.
  • Collin County Community College$60,382 – the college engages 120 students in hands-on learning to familiarize them with the myriad of post-secondary and STEM career opportunities in North Texas.
  • St. Mary’s University$84,489 – the university teaches 144 students popular easy-to-use software tools, apps and programming languages, including Visual Studio, Lego MindStorm EV3 (C-based), Python IDLE, GameMaker and ProModel.
  • University of Houston-Clear Lake$51,210 – The STEM in Action with Robots and Game Design Academy provides robotics and game design experiences for 75 students from Brazoria, Harris and Galveston counties.
  • University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center$100,000 – the program enrolls 150 students for camps in biology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology, biotechnology, and physics.
  • North Central Texas College, $56,000 – the college provides 80 students with a hands-on DARTH in 3D (Design & Render Tiny Homes) experience, creating tiny, scaled-down homes using engineering design and the architectural process. The prototype will be transformed into a scale model using a 3D printer.
  • Palo Alto College$83,206 – college enrolls 120 students to code using AutoAuto, Finch Robots 2.0 with micro:bits, Cubit, and other technologies to increase computer science and manufacturing engineering awareness and build coding confidence and robotic programming skills.
  • University of North Texas$100,000 – 144 students will use creativity to drive engagement in the IT Career Readiness Camp, IT Fashion Camp with Electronic Textiles, and Creative Coding and Leadership Camp.
  • Stephen F. Austin State University, $100,000 – the university hosts 140 students for hands-on, project-based learning activities. Camps will include field work opportunities, industry-specific field trips, and STEM career-focused events and activities.
  • San Jacinto Community College District, $73,226 – the program offers 150 camp students a focus on math and science related to careers in engineering and STEM. It will feature industry-relevant speakers, particularly during an immersive STEM day, as well as a full-day excursion to Space Center Houston.
  • Texas A&M University, $74,408 – the university provides 110 students with classroom instruction, hands-on experiences and industry-relevant field trips. All camps include programming covering STEM concepts.
  • Texas Women’s University, $36,400 – the university welcomes 52 students between two camps: CyberCamp and STEMM Camp. CyberCamp educates students on cyberethics and network security, culminating in a mock cyber defense competition. STEMM Camp is a new summer program where students explore basic and medical sciences through hands-on inquiry-based lab activities and engaging real-life case studies.
  • Brazosport College$62,577 – the college welcomes 90 students to participate in interactive and engaging STEM programming that will allow them to apply previous knowledge and skills while introducing new programs.
  • Austin Community College District, $54,177 – the program teaches 100 first-year high school students the latest technologies in the fields of health sciences, manufacturing and information. Participants will become aware of emerging trends and learn what it takes to graduate for a specific career.
  • Houston Community College, $99,038 – the college offers 150 students drone building, virtual reality and Apple Swift Coding sessions. The STEM curriculum will reflect employer-informed skills leading to high-demand career paths.
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