Ms. Amanda Nelson, a mother of Walter Nelson, Global STEM Education Center, GTEC student 2010-2012
“The pathway to a better life is education. Most parents care about their children’s education and hope that their schools are meeting their needs. They also realize that the world is a different place compared to when they were students. Computer technology has had a tremendous impact on society in education, business, communication and even our personal lives. This impact translates into needing additional skills for a competitive world job market. There’s more to school than just learning facts these days. The future design of educational environments is digital in nature and global in scope. Students spend hours using electronic devices each day, both at home and at school. Therefore, information literacy is paramount for success in today’s world and should be a mandatory addition to curriculum. Critical, analytical, and independent thinking are crucial skills more than ever today for students to acquire as they head into a global environment. Recent data shows that many students who are leaving school at all levels lack any specific practical experience; lack any specific career training; lack a sense of ethical and professional conduct; and lack the ability to communicate effectively in both oral and written form.GTEC (Global, Technology and Engineering Consortium) is a very unique, innovative program that is essentially designed to meet the needs of a 21st century learner and to fill in the gaps where traditional classrooms are failing. Mastering skills that are imperative to survive in the competitive nature of today’s global workforce is at the crux. With GTEC, students are given the opportunity to create, collaborate and communicate across media-rich networks and systems. The learning is student-centered; they lead with their own initiatives and entrepreneurships skills. They are ultimately responsible for accessing and analyzing information. It also allows their curiosity and imagination to lead the way.GTEC fuses learning with work and recreation. The learning is not boring or unexciting. The interactivity and connectivity are qualities that make the learning interesting and meaningful. Students learn how to innovate by setting goals and using talents and creativity to follow their interests. GTEC’s collaborative slant also prepares students for the actualities of their future work environment. It is a vital link between realistic preparation and the national STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) initiative which has been in the news so much recently.”
Mrs. Elena Bershanska, a mother of Anastasia Bershanska, Global STEM Education Center, GTEC student 2013-2014 (MIT Class 2019)
The Global STEM Classroom® Program is an unique program. It is very different from all other existing programs. I have been acquainted with Global STEM since my daughter, Anastasia Bershanskaya, was a pupil of 9th grade at the Moscow Physics and Mathematics Lyceum"L2SH" (Moscow Lyceum “Vtoraya Shkola”).
Her teacher suggested participation in the project. The actual project was a comparative analysis of different on-line collaboration and communication platforms. I have to admit that Anastasia often participates in different competitions, clubs, school academic events, and I'm used to it. But I realized that The Global STEM Classroom® Program was something very special. It had an amazing effect on our daughter. You could tell she was glowing and truly enjoying her experience.
For days and days, we saw her very passionately working on the project and communicating via Skype with other student members of her team. It felt as if she was ready to work on the project 24/7 uninterrupted. When she joined family dinners, all we talked about was the project – the importance of some criteria or, some functions of the comparative analysis. You can tell that our whole family was actively participating in the project discussions. There is a lot to share about our family trip from Moscow to Boston for a conference and how much Anastasia was worried before her team presentation.
The benefits of collaborative scientific work of the teacher and the pupils go far beyond the school program. The program provides an experience for students to learn how to collaborate with people with different cultural backgrounds while working on authentic science, engineering and technology problems in multicultural teams and overcoming many logistical challenges (like working with a team member located in a different time zone).
I also would like to emphasize the importance of this program for the students in K-12 – and especially for students 13-15 years old – the age when a person's world is being formed. The program gives students the experience of international and trans-cultural interaction through A real STEM activity.”