The STEM-Venture Academy is a partnership between the Arkansas STEM Coalition, local schools/districts, and various industry partners in Arkansas.

The Academy targets 10th grade youth to introduce them to middle skill level science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers through engagement with companies providing important infrastructure services to their communities.

The Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas helps to teach students the importance of electricity in our daily lives.

Students pose in front of a Union Pacific train.

Central Arkansas Water exhibits a water test for students to view.

Students are connected with business volunteers who engage them in tours and hands-on activities at their companies one-two days per month. Students are selected for this program counselors, career coaches, teachers or school administrators. Engagement in the program allows students to gain an understanding of the practical context of mathematics and science knowledge, soft skills and work ready skills as well as a deeper understanding of career pathways and available resources (schooling, certificates/licenses/degrees, training). Additionally, they gain awareness of the regular tasks and employers’ increased expectations of personal lifestyle management skills. Students develop a better understanding of the job market potential of particular industries and potential for job opportunities (internships, entry level positions, etc.).

The program is sponsored in part by Union Pacific.

Other STEM Venture partners and host sites for this year’s program include Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas, Central Arkansas Water, Nabholz Construction, the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and Union Pacific.