If you are in Massachusetts and interested in improving STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education you will want to be aware of the fourth annual STEM summit being held this October. Registration is now open. I have attended the last several of these and have learned quite a bit.

The "2007 STEM Summit IV: Accelerating Forward," will be held on Wednesday, October 17, at the Sturbridge Host Hotel and Conference Center, Sturbridge, MA. Educators, both PK-12 and higher education, community and business leaders and state and local-level policy makers are invited to attend. The combined efforts of all stakeholders can and will accelerate successful student preparation for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in Massachusetts.

 Some scary statistics to those of us who care about getting more people interested in STEM fields from their web site.

Fact: In 1999 26% of Massachusetts SAT test takers indicated an interest in a STEM field major.
Fact: By 2006, this had dropped to 19.9% and has stayed at this level.
Fact: To get back to 26% by 2010, Massachusetts needs to prepare and generate 4,000 students over and above the 11,900 currently indicating the intention to major in STEM at the higher education level.

There is work to be done but clearly people in Massachusetts are not shying away from it.