STEM Mentors Toolkit
Thanks to OregonASK’s connection with Million Girls Moonshot, long time partnership as Oregon Girls Collaborative, and continued effort to support authentic youth engagement, we are able to focus on several important goals:
(1) Raise awareness by building upon communication strategies to inform and educate state partners and programs
(2) Shift practice and engage youth by deepening engagement with programs to activate transformative programming and expanding cross-sector partners
(3) Increase our collective impact by strengthening organizational effectiveness and enhancing our fiscal sustainability.
The STEM Volunteer Managment Toolkit provides a manual to help programs and organizations engage, train, and sustain STEM volunteer and mentor relationships with STEM professionals.
The STEM Volunteer toolkit is an outline of best practices for STEM volunteers and mentors. It includes samples and templates, as well as reference data and a glossary of useful terms. We hope that this toolkit will also enable us to create accessible training for STEM volunteers and mentors and school or afterschool staff.
Role Models, Mentors, and Families are an essential part of supporting youth and programs that foster youth engagement through STEM. The vision for these toolkits are that they be focused on:
- In-school or after school programs’ use
- STEM Volunteers/Mentors spending time with student Groups engaged in STEM learning
- An academic “doing” (event, presentation, activity…) that closes the mentee/mentor relationship for positive STEM identity development.
These toolkits were assembled by OregonASK and its partners based on the feedback and resources provided by our STEM Mentoring Committee. The purpose of the STEM Mentoring Committee was to consider what kinds of information would be included that could be useful for STEM mentors, educators and administrators in building positive mentor/student group relationships.
- What would help communication between school programs and STEM professionals?
- How can successful STEM mentor programs be implemented smoothly in school and after school?
STEM Mentoring Resources: Why combine STEM and mentoring?
Because youth benefit from both. With the increasing importance of STEM in our society and the continued growth of STEM-related occupations, it is critical that youth from all backgrounds have opportunities to build STEM literacy and to see STEM career opportunities firsthand. If you have a mentoring program and are looking to incorporate some STEM activities, there are many resources available to help you.
- The National AfterSchool Association (NAA) publishes short, discovery-based experiences called STEM Gems that require few if any materials to implement and are designed for youth of all ages.
- The Afterschool Alliance has a wide range of STEM Resources that includes curricula, professional development resources, funding ideas, and evaluation tools specifically developed for engaging youth in STEM in afterschool settings.
- The National Mentoring Resource Center shares a list of best practices as well as resources for those interested in starting their own STEM mentoring program.
- The National Girls Collaborative has been supporting young women in STEM through their FabFems national mentoring database of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professions who are inspiring role models for young women. The FabFems directory is accessible to young women, girl-serving STEM programs, and other organizations that are working to increase career awareness and interest in STEM.