STEM and Computer Science Equity Fellowship

STEM and Computer Science Equity Fellowship Position Description

The Need:

Our nation is currently battling the COVID-19 pandemic, and a related economic crisis, a double reckoning substantially exacerbated by racial disparities, our shared history of systemic racism, and a lack of trust in government.  It is estimated that as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, most children will have lost 3-11 months of learning with disproportionate impacts for Black, LatinX and low-income students.  

Responding to, and recovering from, the COVID-19 pandemic requires an intensive, all-hands on deck approach to ensure we build and scale new models to recover and rebuild.  Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, students’ experiences were varied and inconsistent.  Too many children of color and children in low-income communities did not have access to the engaging and inspiring experiences they deserved.  

Fortunately, there has been a historic infusion of resources to the PreK-12 education system to support with COVID response and recovery.  There is an opportunity to reimagine education and learning experiences in a way that center young people and their families while also providing a well-rounded education filled with science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and computer science (CS) skills and knowledge that will prepare all young people for futures full of choices and opportunities.

Building more equitable and engaging STEM learning experiences is a critical component of rebuilding our education system to empower all of our young people to harness their talents and unlock their potential.  Their brilliance is desperately needed as we address global challenges like climate change and bridge new frontiers like space.  Supporting inclusive, engaging STEM and CS education both in and out of school is a critical need for our nation.

The Opportunity:

The STEM and CS Equity Fellow provides a unique opportunity for an individual with expertise in STEM and CS Equity to support the U.S. Department of Education’s mission to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access.  In particular, the Fellowship would support the Office of the Deputy Secretary (ODS) at the U.S Department of Education.

The Fellow’s primary charge would be to support COVID-19 response and recovery by working alongside officials at the U.S. Department of Education to harness the power of the U.S. Department of Education to support equitable and engaging STEM and CS education from PreK-16.  The Fellow would be responsible for developing and implementing a STEM and CS strategy that advances the Secretary’s vision for education in America and supports the strategic goals and priorities of the Department. 

The Fellow is to be responsible for developing and refining a department wide strategy, convening an informal team of STEM experts across the department to implement the strategy, build tools to track progress and report on outcomes of the STEM work and engage external experts to surface and identify strong models of excellent and inclusive STEM education from PreK-16. THe Fellow will also be responsible for identifying opportunities to deepen the Department’s work in STEM and CS through external convenings, public-private partnerships and other communications and outreach activities.

In addition to working with offices across ED, the Fellow will coordinate with other Federal Agencies that support afterschool and summer learning opportunities. These include but are not limited to: the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS/AmeriCorps), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Park Service, the Department of Commerce, and the Department of Justice.

The Fellow’s duties and responsibilities at ODS will include but are not limited to the following:

  • Refining and implementing a STEM and CS Strategy for the US Department of Education, which includes a focus on in and out of school STEM and CS.
  • Convening an internal ED team to implement the STEM and CS strategy weekly
  • Keeping a strong project plan related to all of the STEM and CS activities and close management of deliverables to ensure on time delivery of the deliverables.
  • Regular communication about progress and opportunities to the Fellows manager and senior leadership.  This could include: regular written updates, formal briefing sessions and other communications opportunities.
  • Representing ED in some of the interagency working groups focused on STEM education.
  • Surfacing exemplar STEM and CS programs and opportunities to learn more about effective models and identify spotlight opportunities or site visits.  These models should include examples from in and out of school learning experiences.
  • Identify opportunities to break down silos between in-school STEM and CS learning and out-of-school learning to promote holistic, well-rounded learning opportunities for students.
  • Supporting senior leaders engagements around STEM and CS.  For example, preparing briefing memos, talking points, video scripts and others.
  • Coordinating with organizations and individuals with expertise in STEM and CS both in and out of school to support the discovery and scaling of evidence-based practices.
  • Utilizing ED resources to enable new collaboration models and approaches that support STEM and CS learning in partnership with the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), Office of Civil Rights (OCR), Office of Postsecondary Education (IES) and Institute of Education Sciences (IES).
  • Incorporating feedback and advice from their supervisor and other ED colleagues to ensure quality work products.
  • Coordinating with their supervisor and working with other Federal Agencies to strengthen collaboration between ED and other Federal partners, such as those listed above, in the area of STEM and CS equity.
  • Identifying opportunities (e.g., convenings, events, speeches, and other communications) to highlight models, interventions, and policies in afterschool and summer learning at the State and local levels that others can learn from and replicate, as appropriate.
  • Identifying opportunities  to provide content area expertise around afterschool and summer learning practices and approaches.

The Person:

The ideal candidate for this role is an intrapreneurial and collaborative problem solver passionate about STEM and Tech equity in PreK-16, as well as educational equity.  This person must be highly self-motivated, organized and excel at implementation of priorities. 

  • U.S. Citizenship required.
  • Background investigation/security clearance and verification that he or she has not defaulted on any loan funded or guaranteed by ED required.
  • Military selective service registration by the date of appointment as a STEM Next Opportunity Fund Fellow required (applicable only to males born after December 31, 1959).
  • Bachelor’s degree required, although a graduate degree is strongly preferred.
  • 10+ years of experience in education required, with experience in afterschool and summer learning, and educational equity preferred.
  • 5+ years of experience in education policy required.
  • Previous experience building relationships across diverse groups of stakeholders required.
  • Previous experience working in the Federal Government preferred.

All Fellows are required to pass a background check and security clearance as required by their Federal Agency.

To Apply:

Please submit a written application here by May 31st, 2022 at 5pm PT.

Salary and Benefits:

The Salary Range for this position is $115,000-$165,000.  STEM Next provides paid time off, sick leave and 13 federal holidays.  STEM Next provides a comprehensive set of benefits including: Medical, Dental, Vision, Life, Short Term Disability, Long Term Disability, 401(k) Retirement Plan, and Health Savings Account and Flexible Spending Account.

STEM Next provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. 

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