Grand Valley conference will focus on STEM education, industry collaboration

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The advancement and improvement of STEM education will be the focus of a national conference that will take place at Grand Valley State University, June 3-4.  

The third annual ASQ STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Agenda Conference invites industry leaders, employers and educators to discuss ways to improve strategies for effective and successful collaboration between industry and education. The conference agenda and registration is at asq.org/conferences/stem-agenda.

Paul Plotkowski, dean of the Padnos College of Engineering and Computing at Grand Valley, said there is a huge, national demand for graduates in the STEM fields. “In a recent study, nine of the top 10 most in-demand fields are in engineering and computer science,” he said. “This conference will bring together professionals in the STEM fields, ranging from K-12 teachers to university faculty and employers.”

The American Society for Quality (ASQ) Education Division, a co-sponsor of the conference, chose Grand Valley as a host because of the university’s growing reputation as an exceptional engineering school. Grand Valley was recognized in 2012 by the National Academy of Engineering as an exemplar of “Real World Engineering Education” for its co-op and capstone programs.

Keynote speakers include:

• Paul Plotkowki, dean of the Seymour and Esther Padnos College of Engineering and Computing, Grand Valley State University
• Reginald McGregor, manager of engineering employee development R &T strategy at Rolls-Royce Corporation in Indianapolis
• Carrie Houtman, regulatory affairs leader at Dow Chemical. She led Dow’s STEM education initiatives and represented Dow on President Obama’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnership
• Glenn Walters, deputy cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Higher Education Department

Two panel discussions and four workshops will take place on topics such as, developing effective industry partnerships, assessing STEM learning communities, improving graduation rates, and entrepreneurship.  

For more information about the conference, visit www.gvsu.edu/pcec.