Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Information and Resources

STEM Nexus: Connecting Massachusetts' STEM Community

What's New

  • FY2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report which showcases the Directors and Women of the DHE Regional STEM Networks

    Massachusetts STEM Summit 2020 - Postponed

    Due to statewide public health guidance from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Summit has been postponed to Fall 2020.

    We are currently exploring options to reschedule the STEM Summit to align with STEM Week in the Fall of 2020 and remain committed to the mission, vision, and planning of the STEM Summit as originally intended.

    Registration status: April registrations will be honored at the rescheduled STEM Summit, no action is needed. All refund requests will be processed. Email to request a refund. 

    The theme for the 2020 STEM Summit, See Yourself in STEM: Connecting Educators to Employers, signals the launch of an exciting new era for this iconic event. In the fall of 2019, Massachusetts held its 2nd annual STEM Week, with regional events across the Commonwealth showcasing hundreds of diverse and creative STEM education and workforce development programs. The statewide Summit in Spring 2020 will build on STEM Week’s momentum as we explore opportunities for strengthening the STEM talent pipeline through creative approaches to building foundational STEM skills, developing high quality, guided STEM pathways for learners, and deepening employer partnerships to promote STEM career opportunities.

    The registration fee will be $50.00. Please note: this fee will be waived for all full-time students. 

    The Summit will include a full schedule of sessions, networking breakout opportunities, and exhibit hall. Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and champions of STEM in the Commonwealth will be with us in Worcester!

    We hope you can join us to continue towards the future of STEM in Massachusetts. 

  • FY2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report which showcases the Directors and Women of the DHE Regional STEM Networks

    Office of the Comptroller Files FY2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report

    The report highlights DHE's efforts to promote women in STEM through Regional STEM Networks

    February 10, 2020 — Today, Comptroller of the Commonwealth Andrew W. Maylor filed the Commonwealth’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) for Fiscal Year 2019, the period that ended June 30, 2019. The objective of the report is to provide a clear financial picture of the government of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as a single, unified entity.

    The FY2019 CAFR also specifically highlights the important work that the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education is doing to promote women in STEM through its Nexus STEM Regional Networks.

  • STEM Week 2019

    SE MA STEM Network hosts event to prepare for STEM Week 2019

    Participants engaged in experiential learning activities that can be replicated throughout a variety of learning organizations during 2nd annual STEM Week.

    On August 12, 2019, the SE MA STEM Network hosted, Educating for the Future: Practices- Programs- Partnerships at Bridgewater State University. The event, which attracted 100 regional STEM enthusiasts from PK-12, higher education, community organizations, and business and industry partners, provided opportunities for participants to engage in relevant, contemporary, experiential learning activities that can be replicated throughout a variety of learning organizations during the Commonwealth’s 2nd annual STEM Week.

    Massachusetts Secretary of Education, Jim Peyser provided dynamic welcoming remarks for the attendees and encouraged all of the participants to “See Yourself in STEM”, which is the theme for this year’s STEM Week, which will be held October 21–25.  During his remarks, Secretary Peyser emphasized the importance of authentic collaboration between PK-16 education partners and businesses when he said, “STEM education needs employer engagement to work.” He continued by challenging employers to consider how they could accommodate interns, and if it would be feasible for them to represent 10% of their business workforce.

    Additional program highlights included remarks from Anvitha Addanki, a Canton High School senior and 2019 MA State Science & Engineering Fair 1st place winner for her research entitled, “A Novel Noninvasive Biomarker for Diagnosing Major Depressive Disorder”, as well reflections from Francesca DiMare, 2019 Brockton High School Valedictorian and 2019 MA State Science & Engineering Fair 2nd place winner for her project entitled, “A DNA Barcode Approach to Ascertain the Foraging Habits of Native Bees.”   

    During the event, participants had the opportunity to engage in four, hands-on workshops, where materials, models, and resources were provided, so the activities could be replicated and adapted in their respective settings. Workshops topics included:

    • Creating Emojis, presented by Project Lead the Way (PLTW)
    • Micro:bit Magic 8 Ball, presented by the Kaput Center for Research & Innovation in STEM Education at UMass Dartmouth
    • Engaging All Ages in Coding, presented by the Robbins Children’s Programs
    • Engaging STEM Learners with iPad, presented by Apple Education
    • iPlan: An Exploration of Local Environmental Monitoring, presented by Mass Audubon
    • STEAM Drones, presented by  Nebula Academy
    • Survive That Tsunami!, presented by Wade Institute for Science Education
    • Innovation Station - problem based learning, presented by Mansfield Public Schools
    • Engineering Design Challenge – Wind Turbines, presented by Brockton Public Library- Maker Space
  • STEM Week 2019

    Baker-Polito Administration Announces Second Annual Statewide STEM Week

    Focus on STEM education during the week of October 21-25, 2019 aimed at sparking student interest and knowledge

    In order to highlight the connection of strong STEM education to a talented and skilled workforce, Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito, in collaboration with the STEM Advisory Council, are planning the second annual statewide “STEM Week” from October 21-25, 2019.

    During STEM Week, schools will be able to highlight specific week-long STEM curriculum (i.e., i2 Learning), special classes on particular days or showcase efforts already underway (i.e., Project Lead The Way courses). STEM Week activities will encompass Pre-K – grade 20 learning, with a particular emphasis on middle and high school STEM courses.

    Additionally, during STEM week, at least one member of the Administration or STEM Council Executive Committee will visit classrooms and/or school-related STEM activities (e.g., STEM@Work internships, job shadows, etc.) each day.

  • STEM Week 2018

    Central Massachusetts STEM Network Selected to Join Global STEM Learning Ecosystems Community of Practice

    Central Massachusetts wins support to build connections among local schools, businesses, other partners

    (Worcester, MA — April 3, 2019) The Central Massachusetts STEM Network has just been selected to join the STEM Learning Ecosystems Community of Practice, SLECoP. In a highly competitive process, the Central Massachusetts STEM Network was named one of 15 new ecosystems selected to join the global movemen t devoted to dramatic improvement in how students learn.

    STEM Learning Ecosystems build meaningful regional connections among educators, business and industry partners, afterschool and summer programs, to prepare students for the opportunities and challenges of the future. Each ecosystem connects to counterparts from across the country and world, enabling the exchange of best practices, information and resource-sharing.

    The 15 ecosystems joining the SLECoP today bring the number to 85 total, with most in the United States but also extending to Canada, Mexico, Israel and Kenya. New ecosystems to join the SLECoP range from the entire states of Iowa, Texas, South Carolina and West Virginia to regions like Biloxi, Miss., Broward County, Fla., Central Massachusetts and Lincoln, Neb.

    “This was an incredibly competitive process, and we were only able to admit ecosystems who would be capable of making immediate contributions to our thriving community of practice,” said Jan Morrison, president and founding partner of TIES, the organization that operates the SLECoP. “The ecosystems that we selected now have pulled together diverse partners who no longer accept the status quo in education; they want to see all students access high quality STEM education that will prepare them for life and work in the next century.”

    Forming STEM ecosystems was listed as the No. 1 priority for STEM education in a December 2018 report by the Federal Office of Science and Technology Policy.

    Central Massachusetts is making great strides to offer the recommended rich, meaningful STEM education and experiences to our youth,” said Kathy Chen, Executive Director of the STEM Education Center at WPI and lead for the Central Massachusetts STEM Network. “As a recognized STEM Learning Ecosystem, we can tailor quality STEM learning opportunities to our specific needs in Central Massachusetts while leveraging the experiences of similar alliances across the world.”

    Members of the new Central Massachusetts STEM Network Ecosystem include almost 300 representatives of PreK-12 schools and districts, higher education institutions, non-profit community groups, businesses and industry, and government.

    Early plans for the Central Massachusetts STEM Network Ecosystem include a quarterly meeting on May 16 to begin ramping up for Massachusetts STEM Week October 21-25 and TouchTomorrow coming up on June 8 at WPI.

    The STEM Learning Ecosystems Community of Practice, SLECoP, is a global initiative of innovators who know that thriving communities are built through collaboration and a willingness to reimagine education and provide opportunities to those commonly neglected.

    The SLECoP was built on the fundamental belief that learning happens everywhere, not just in traditional classrooms. Consequently, ecosystems are made up of partners representing K-12 public and private education, business and industry, after-school providers, non-profits, STEM-rich institutions, government and philanthropy.

    Learn more about the national initiative at Address specific questions to Join online conversations on Twitter @STEMecosystems and #STEMecosystems and on Facebook and LinkedIn. Learn more about the Central Massachusetts STEM Network at and join online conversations on Facebook.

    Since its inception in 2004 the Central Massachusetts STEM Network has received grants from the STEM Pipeline Fund, a state trust account administered by the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education to support science, technology, engineering and mathematics initiatives.

  • STEM Week 2018

    Baker-Polito Administration Announces Inaugral STEM Week for Students Across the Commonwealth

    Focus on STEM education during the week of October 22-26, 2018 aimed at sparking student interest and knowledge

    In an effort to boost students’ interest and raise awareness of STEM education, the Baker-Polito Administration will declare a statewide “STEM Week” from October 22-26, 2018, and is asking educators at all grade levels to participate by planning lessons, events, and activities focused on science, technology, engineering and math throughout the week.

    Students from pre-kindergarten through high school and postsecondary institutions will be encouraged to take part in hands-on learning that aligns topics across STEM subjects and connects to other curricula. While STEM Week will be directed toward all students, there will be a particular emphasis on middle and high school students, who are on the verge of thinking about college and careers. High school and middle school students could also take part in internships or informational tours at local companies.

    “While we know that STEM education happens all year long at schools across the Commonwealth, we look forward to the hands-on projects and lessons that will be on display during STEM week next fall,” said Governor Baker. “Creating opportunities for more students to pursue STEM fields after high school will continue to improve our education system, workforce and economy.”

    STEM Week is a collaborative effort with the STEM Advisory Council, which is working to generate interest from the business community for STEM Week activities around the Commonwealth, and foster partnerships with school districts. The state’s Regional STEM Networks are planning and coordinating activities for STEM Week in conjunction with the STEM Advisory Council. Regional STEM networks connect educators, community leaders, and industry partners in order to foster opportunities for students in STEM fields.

    During STEM Week, members of the Baker-Polito Administration and the STEM Advisory Council will visit classrooms and other school-related STEM activities, such as internships, in an effort to showcase successful programs and raise awareness about what is happening in STEM education around the Commonwealth.

  • 2017 STEM Summit logo

    2018 STEM Summit Call for Sessions and Exhibits

    Submit session and exhibit proposals on this year's theme, "Pipelines to Prosperity"

    The Massachussets STEM Summit will be held on November 14, 2018 at the DCU Center in Worcester, MA.

    The theme for this year’s Summit, “Pipelines to Prosperity,” speaks to the multitude of diverse, innovative approaches that seek to nurture curiosity, motivation, and achievement in STEM throughout one’s lifetime. This STEM Pipeline extends from pre-kindergarten through elementary school, secondary school, and out-of-school time, paving the way to STEM pathways into higher education, and ultimately entry to, and advancement in, the STEM workforce. By meeting the growing needs of Massachusetts’ employers for a diverse, talented workforce, the STEM pipeline affords access to rewarding and productive careers and contributes to the promise of continued economic prosperity and growth across the Commonwealth.

    We welcome proposals for sessions and exhibits that explore creative ways in which you are addressing the challenges of engaging individuals in STEM and helping them succeed and progress through the “Pipeline.”

    Proposals for Breakout Sessions and Resource Exhibits may address any of the Summit's topical strands:

    • Early Education
    • Higher Education
    • K-12 Education
    • Workforce and Business

    Guidelines for the preparation and submission of proposals, as well as the proposal forms, can be downloaded from the Summit website.


  • Berkshire-Pioneer Science Engineering Fair 2018

    The Berkshire/Pioneer Valley Network hosted a Science and Engineering Fair at MCLA on March 9, 2018

    More than 60 students took part in the Region 1 High School Science & Engineering Fair held at MCLA and presented their findings to judges

    High school students from Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden and Hampshire counties gathered in the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts gymnasium Friday to vie for a spot in the state science fair and heard from keynote speaker Jeffrey Thomas, founder and executive director of Lever, a startup incubator.

    "STEM was something that you just had to do, and we had to go to science class we had to go to math class," he said. "But as I matured I started to discover the cool things and I realized I was really privileged to get to do STEM and I have had that privilege now my whole life."

    Thomas shared his humble beginnings with the students and said his first lab research job was in high school cleaning out the rat cages. He said sometimes if he was able to finish his work early he could run some experiments in the lab.

    He went on to share his first "dark room moment" in graduate school where he discovered a specific RNA that was both an informational and an activity RNA while developing X-ray film from his research with worms in the dark room.

    "It's a moment in time that I will never ever forget …when I got the clear answer to the question I have been trying to ask," he said. "In that moment … I thought about the fact that I was the only person in the world that knew this piece of that information … I hope you can all have your own darkroom moments at some point."

    Continue reading: Regional Science Fair Draws More Than 60 Budding Scientists– iBerkshires

    Learn more about Berkshire and Pioneer Valley STEM Education:
    Berkshire STEM Network
    Pioneer Valley STEM Network

  • Central MA Science Fest

    Central Massachusetts STEM Network helped sponsor the Central MA Science Festival on April 14, 2018

    Wonders on display delight all ages at the Central Mass. Science Festival

    Riley Foley looked up in amazement as a remote-controlled robot lifted a yellow box and launched it through the air.

    "Woah," the 4-year-old from Leominster yelled, with a big smile.

    The robot, created by Clinton High School students, was on display at the Boys & Girls Club of Fitchburg and Leominster as part of 26 exhibits at the Central Massachusetts Science Festival.

    The Clinton students said they plan to bring the robot, which could reach almost to the gymnasium's basketball hoop, to a competition in Detroit.

    The robot is a three-bar linkage lift, but it also has another name.

    "Unofficially, (my teammate) calls it Shaquille O'Neal," said Smeet Patel, one of the creators who was using a remote control to move the machine around the room.

    Similar scenes were playing out all around the festival on Saturday.

    Continue reading: Wonders on display at Central Mass. Science Festival– Sentinel & Enterprise

    Learn more about Central Massachusetts STEM Education: Central Massachusetts STEM Network

  • Group photo from the announcement of the New Skills Grant on January 11, 2017

    Massachusetts Awarded $2 Million to Improve Career Education

    Commonwealth among recipients of New Skills for Youth grant from JPMorgan Chase and CCSSO

    The Baker-Polito Administration announced today that the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. have selected Massachusetts as one of 10 states to receive a $1.95 million grant to strengthen and expand high-quality career-education pathways for students.

    The grant, which will be distributed over the next three years, is part of the $75 million, five-year New Skills for Youth initiative developed by JPMorgan Chase in collaboration with CCSSO and Advance CTE and aims to strengthen career-focused education starting in high school and ending with postsecondary degrees and/or industry-recognized credentials aligned with high-skill jobs.

    "Our administration has focused on aligning our K-12 schools and higher education system with the needs of our workforce so that our students, employers, and communities will share a stronger future," said Governor Charlie Baker. "Lieutenant Governor Polito and I are honored that Massachusetts and the potential of our students will be recognized through this grant." 

    "We thank JPMorgan, the Council of Chief State School Officers and other partners who have helped make this grant award possible," said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. "This New Skills for Youth grant complements our administration's prioritization of STEM-focused career education by developing more high-quality pathway programs and expanding the number of students who graduate from high school with college credits and real world experience."

    "This important grant opportunity comes at an optimal time for the Commonwealth and perfectly aligns with our administration's career and technical education priorities for Massachusetts in this and coming years," said Secretary of Education Jim Peyser. "Creating high-quality career pathways will not only offer our students and their families more opportunities to succeed in school and in their careers, but also help strengthen the Massachusetts economy."

    "Constant changes in technology and globalization make it imperative for the Commonwealth to increase opportunities for skill acquisition for all our students," Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Ronald L. Walker, II, said. "This grant will help us continue the work of creating effective career on-ramps for younger workers through education pathways."

    "I am thrilled that Massachusetts students will be among the beneficiaries of this grant," said Massachusetts Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Mitchell Chester. "I look forward to continuing our collaboration with educators and industry to set students on a clear path toward their own career goals."

    "This grant will have enormous impact for some of our neediest students," said Higher Education Commissioner Carlos E. Santiago. "We owe it to them to make sure that career exposure and training is integrated into a robust curriculum that will give them what every employer demands – a full box of workplace-ready tools, including quantitative reasoning skills, critical thinking skills, and the ability to write well, to work as part of a team and to lead."

    Massachusetts has received the grant from CCSSO for the New Skills for Youth initiative after a rigorous review process, which included examination of the state's plan to transform the process of designing and developing career preparedness education programs.

    This includes:

    • Launching a major competitive grant program to fund the creation of high-quality career pathways that fully prepare students for high-skill, high-wage careers; 
    • Developing a comprehensive career advisement system in partnership with the Massachusetts School Counselors Association so that all students can make more informed college and career choices; and
    • Creating clear guidelines to help high schools develop and implement high-quality career pathways that will better prepare students for success after graduation.

    "Preparing our youth for high-quality and in-demand careers is critical to the future strength of our communities," said Rick MacDonald, head of commercial banking in New England for JPMorgan Chase. "This investment will help to open more career pathways and give more young people the chance to learn, compete, and succeed." 

    "Bunker Hill Community College is committed to creating clear pathways to fulfilling careers for our students," said Bunker Hill Community College President Pam Eddinger, whose institution participated on the state team applying for the grant"This grant will allow us to continue this important work through our partnerships with local businesses and corporations and well as high schools."

    "As an employer, I know how critical career-focused education is, and it has been exciting to be part of the team pursuing this grant," said Susan Coghlin Mailman, president of Coghlin Electric Contractors, Inc. "I appreciate the coordinated effort that our state is putting forth in order to strengthen opportunities for our youth which will ultimately create a stronger and more qualified work force."

    In March 2016, JPMorgan Chase and CCSSO awarded Massachusetts a $100,000 grant as part of the first phase of the New Skills for Youth initiative for planning and early implementation of long-term career readiness education programs that align with the needs of employers. Twenty-four states and the District of Columbia received Phase I grants.

    The grant awarded today represents the second phase of the New Skills for Youth initiative, which provides 10 of the original 24 recipients with funding to execute the career-readiness plans they developed during the first phase.

STEM In the News
This website is supported by the STEM Pipeline Fund, a state trust account administered by the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education to support STEM initiatives.