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CareerTech and Partners Give STEM Teachers Aerospace Instruction Help

Some Oklahoma teachers will learn more about incorporating aerospace into their classrooms during the Aerospace Education and Industry Partnership Day on July 31.

Approximately 100 elementary and secondary science, technology, engineering and mathematics teachers are enrolled in the sixth annual AEIP Day, presented by Oklahoma CareerTech and Rose State College.

CareerTech and Rose State are working with local aerospace companies, other education organizations and government and business groups to present the event, which will be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Rose State College. Their goal is to develop a STEM-based workforce for Oklahoma’s aerospace industry.

“Tomorrow’s workforce is in today’s classroom; therefore, a strong and active partnership between education and industry is a necessity,” said retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Ben Robinson, AEIP chairman.

The concept of AEIP is to create educational relevance and understanding of the Oklahoma aerospace industry by bringing together Oklahoma STEM teachers in grades three through 12 and Oklahoma aerospace business and government partners. All teachers attending are designated Oklahoma Aerospace Fellows. Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission Director Victor Bird will speak at the event, along with Melchor Antunano, director of the Federal Aviation Administration’s Civilian Aeronautical Medical Institute.

The day will also include an employee panel featuring an FAA aerospace engineer, a Boeing business and engineering employee and a Sundance Airpark aviation entrepreneur.

Throughout the day, participating teachers will attend breakout sessions demonstrating innovative teaching techniques and hear from STEM education organizations. Each teacher will have a chance to apply for grants of up to $2,000 and will receive a $110 credit for purchases through PITSCO Education, a supplier of STEM education equipment, supplies and curriculum.

Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb will present the Boeing and PITSCO educational grants during the closing session.

AEIP is funded by sponsors who are interested in improving the capabilities of teachers to use innovative approaches to engage their students, use relevance to increase mastery of STEM subjects and make the connection to one of the fastest growing industries in Oklahoma.

This year’s sponsors are Boeing Co., Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission, Oklahoma NASA Space Grant Consortium, Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex, 21st Century Community Learning Centers, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, Oklahoma Department of Commerce, Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education, Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence and Tinker Federal Credit Union.