Oak Hill Middle School Hosts Kickoff of Newton's DIGITS Project
Massachusetts Commissioner of Higher Education Richard M. Freeland is set to speak.
The following information is a press release issued by the DIGITS Project:
The Oak Hill Middle School in Newton will host an assembly on Thursday morning, June 2 (from 8:56 a.m. to 9:46 a.m.), marking the kickoff of the DIGITS Project, a program that connects sixth-grade classes with volunteer industry professionals to inspire student interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers, in the Newton Public Schools. The assembly will feature remarks by Richard M. Freeland, MA Commissioner of Higher Education, who oversees the STEM Pipeline Fund and is a member of the Lt. Governor’s STEM Advisory Council. Commissioner Freeland will speak about the importance of STEM education. Oak Hill Middle School Principal Eva M. Thompson will host the assembly program, serving as a leader in the STEM education effort.
The assembly will feature a career presentation by Jim Toepel, of Harmonix (the Massachusetts company that developed the popular Guitar Hero, Rock Band, and Dance Central video games) about the importance of math and science in pursuing his career from Boeing, through NASA and the Kennedy Space Center, to Harmonix. The program will also feature a performance of the DIGITS music video by Boston-born Las Vegas entertainer Tezz Yancey.
The assembly will be followed up by individual sixth grade classroom visits throughout the Newton school system by industry professionals from such Massachusetts companies and agencies as Akamai Technologies, Ammann & Whitney, EMD Serono, ITA Software, MathWorks, Mott MacDonald, PTC, Raytheon, and Shire Human Genetic Therapies, to promote further discussion among students about math and science careers.
About the DIGITS Project
The DIGITS Project is a cross-sector STEM education initiative to increase student interest in math and science subjects and careers. The project partners STEM professionals, individuals who work in science and technology companies, with sixth-grade classes across the Commonwealth. It was created by six leading industry associations: The Engineering Center (host organization); Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council; Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation, affiliated with the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council; the Massachusetts Network Communications Council (now a part of the Mass Tech Leadership Council); Massachusetts Medical Device Industry Council; and New England Clean Energy Council.
The project is implemented in partnership with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents, Massachusetts of Elementary School Principals Association, and the Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators’ Association.
Originally funded by the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education’s STEM Pipeline Fund and the Mass Technology Leadership Council, the initiative is now underwritten by STEM companies including The MathWorks, Akamai Technologies, Analog Devices, Mass. Life Sciences Center, SolidWorks, Verizon, Cisco, Meditech, PTC, IBM, and EMD Serono.