Florida’s top STEM scholars honored at statewide conference
Program encourages STEM students to pursue higher education in Florida
TALLAHASSEE, FL – The state’s highest-achieving 11 grade STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) scholars from each school district were the focus at an annual recognition and recruitment event recently in Orlando. The two-day Sunshine State Scholars conference celebrates the accomplishments of Florida’s elite students and provides a unique venue for the state’s colleges and universities to recruit their talents.
“The Sunshine State Scholars of today are the leaders of tomorrow,” said Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart. “My congratulations to the scholars for their accomplishments and am confident they will lead Florida to new heights. I also want to thank their teachers for inspiring them toward success.”
“The Sunshine State Scholars program allows our brightest students to see the quality higher education opportunities available to them in Florida,” said Florida Education Foundation Chairman Dr. Stacy Carlson. “I applaud the scholars for their hard work and look forward to watching them lead Florida to an even brighter future.”
“We are proud to recognize these outstanding Sunshine State Scholars for their achievements” said Paul Luna, President and CEO of Helios Education Foundation. “Helios is founded on the belief that education is an investment and not an expense. We are proud to invest in Florida’s prosperous future through our collaborative partnership with the Florida Department of Education.”
As part of his 2015-2016 “Keep Florida Florida Working” budget, Governor Rick Scott has announced one million dollars in proposed funding to partner with high-tech companies in Florida to create a paid summer residency program for STEM teachers to bring new industry trends in STEM fields back to Florida’s K-12 classrooms.
In addition to the summer residency program, Gov. Scott’s “Keep Florida Florida Working” budget also proposes $30 million for a new workforce training initiative focused on STEM occupations and five million dollars to incentivize state colleges to offer $10,000 STEM degrees.