The University of Iowa Femineers program has been awarded seed funding from the Southeast Iowa STEM Region of the Iowa Governor’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Advisory Council.

The College of Engineering WiSE Program became the first Femineer™ affiliate university outside of California in the nation in November.

The Femineers™ is a nationally recognized program developed and funded by Cal Poly Pomona College of Engineering since 2013 to inspire and empower K-12 underrepresented female students to pursue education and careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). It incorporates project-based learning, which is a direct reflection of Cal Poly Pomona’s motto: “Learn by Doing.” The program was recognized by the White House in 2015 for increasing educational outcomes and opportunities for female Hispanic K-12 students. The curriculum consists of three, thirty-hour modules that can be implemented in school or as an after-school program.

A goal of the Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council is to support research based STEM education proven to promote, inspire and engage youth in STEM activities and to introduce children and their parents to STEM careers. In support of this goal, the Council piloted the Southeast Iowa STEM Innovation fund, a financial resource pool available to organizations with ideas for innovative STEM programs that show promise for supporting this goal.

“The acronym STEM in itself is supposed to spark innovative ideas. The STEM Council realizes that there are many organizations in Iowa that are developing creative programs for Iowa youth but need funds to help them grow,” said Kristine Bullock, Southeast Iowa Regional STEM Manager. “Through this fund, we are able to support local programs that have the potential to have a broader impact in the future.”

The Innovation Fund awards were made possible through generous donations from Alliant Energy, CIPCO, ITC Midwest, Linn County REC, Roquette and University of Iowa Community Credit Union.

To learn more about the Southeast Iowa STEM region, visit https://se.iowastem.org/.