Dow Partners with the American Chemical Society to Improve Chemistry Teaching Throughout North America
Inaugural Teacher Summit to be held Summer 2015 in Midland, Michigan
The Dow Chemical Company (Dow) and the American Association of Chemistry Teachers (AACT) are partnering to invigorate chemistry education and support STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in the nation’s schools.
Dow and AACT will work together to convene a series of teacher summits and create more than 750 lesson plans, multimedia resources, demonstrations and other high-quality chemistry teaching materials for use in K–12 classrooms. The work will be supported by a $1 million contribution from Dow to the AACT spread over a four year period.
AACT was launched in 2014 by the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society. The partnership with Dow promotes the main goal of AACT—to provide its members with resources that foster top-notch chemistry instruction grounded in everyday life.
“We are thrilled to be working together with Dow to support teachers of chemistry across the country and develop the workforce of tomorrow,” said Madeleine Jacobs, ACS executive director and chief executive officer. “We hope that this partnership can serve as a model that will catalyze greater engagement between chemical industries and local communities.”
“A skilled STEM workforce fuels innovation and economic prosperity and creates solutions that improve the quality of life for people across the globe. At Dow, we value teachers’ critical role, both in inspiring chemistry excitement and in helping students to gain the key skills they need to be successful in STEM careers,” said Andrew N. Liveris, Dow’s chairman and chief executive officer. “As the founding partner of this program, we are proud to collaborate with ACS on this first of its kind community to empower chemistry teachers inside and outside of the classroom as they work to inspire the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs.”
Dow’s STEM mission is to build the workforce of tomorrow by supporting teachers, motivating student achievement, developing careers, and collaborating with communities to transform STEM education into a driver for innovation, manufacturing, and economic prosperity. Through its STEMtheGAP™ initiatives, including the AACT partnership, Dow strives to provide more resources to teachers, drive excitement in young people around STEM topics and increase the number of students who choose STEM majors, ultimately preparing these students to be successful in STEM careers.
“This new partnership comes at a critical time,” said Adam Boyd, AACT program director. “Enrollment in high school chemistry classes is on the rise. Yet, only 35 percent of high school chemistry teachers have both a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and are actually certified to teach it.”
In order to prepare these teachers for the challenges they face in the chemistry classroom, Dow and AACT will host a series of teacher summits in cities around the country, with the first summit occurring this summer in Midland, Michigan. Approximately 30 chemistry teachers from surrounding communities will attend the weeklong summit. They will work with Dow volunteers, known as Dow STEM Ambassadors, to identify improvement opportunities in K–12 classroom resources and develop lesson plans, multimedia presentations and other materials that better meet teachers’ needs. As part of this effort, Dow STEM Ambassadors will help teachers incorporate career-based examples into their teaching resources, educating students on future potential career opportunities.
Lesson plans and other classroom materials developed at the Dow-AACT teacher summits will be available to AACT members via the association’s website, www.teachchemistry.org.
AACT is the first national organization of its kind in the United States. Membership in the new organization is open to all who are interested in chemistry education. AACT has three goals: to serve as a trusted source of curricular and pedagogical resources for K–12 chemistry instruction, to provide opportunities for chemistry teachers to network with each other and the broader ACS community, and to disseminate effective teaching and learning practices at the K–12 level. For more information, visit www.teachchemistry.org.
The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 161,000 members, ACS is the world’s largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio. For more information, visit www.acs.org.
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company is driving innovations that extract value from the intersection of chemical, physical and biological sciences to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, clean energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s integrated, market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 180 countries and in high growth sectors such as packaging, electronics, water, coatings and agriculture. In 2013, Dow had annual sales of more than $57 billion and employed approximately 53,000 people worldwide. The Company’s more than 6,000 products are manufactured at 201 sites in 36 countries across the globe. References to “Dow” or the “Company” mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com. More information about Dow’s commitment to promoting STEM education can be found at www.dow.com/company/citizenship/stem.htm.
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