Honolulu Community College strives to continuously improve its role in STEM education and training for our local community. Both the UH Innovation agenda and the State’s economic planning target significant growth in STEM related jobs. The UHCC plan calls for our campus to go from 104 STEM graduates to 145 in FY21. Building upon the strengths of our faculty, staff, and current STEM programs, the college will be creating a comprehensive STEM plan that will position us as a leader of STEM in education and meeting current and future workforce needs. The college believes that STEM has the power to cut across disciplines and be a strong bridge between credit, non-credit and certificate of achievement programs creating technical career pathways. The creation of a comprehensive plan will also allow the college to fully meet and exceed college and system STEM goals.
The creation of a comprehensive STEM plan will focus on the following five activities that will allow the college to fully explore appropriate options as well as capitalize on existing initiatives:
- Write a successful grant application for the National Science Foundation’s Tribal Colleges and University (TCUP) Pre-Planning Grant that will allow the college to focus on creating a STEM plan that also incorporates our mission of being an indigenous serving institution.
- Explore the idea of creating an Associate of Science in Applied Engineering.
- Create a targeted STEM marketing and recruitment plan to engage high schools early and often, build interest in STEM majors and create career pathways in STEM fields.
- Create a STEM Center so that students, community members, faculty and staff have a dedicated space to explore issues, work on projects, and think creatively about STEM.
- Establish Research Intensive (RI) courses that cut across disciplines so that students may have the opportunity to participate in undergraduate research and partner with faculty.
As a result of Town Halls and college-wide conversations, several members of the college community have volunteered to participate in a STEM Working Group. The purpose of the Working Group will be to represent the needs of the college focused on the five initiatives above. The STEM working group is committed to meet on a regular basis to create our College STEM plan and lead our campus toward meeting and exceeding college and system STEM goals.
As the different initiatives begin to unfold, regular updates from the STEM Working Group will be shared with various governance groups and with the campus.