Lambton College partnering with public schools to develop ‘pathway’ for careers

stem partnership
Pictured, left to right: Rob Kardas, Lambton College executive director, Student Success; Jim Costello, director of education for the Lambton Kent District School Board; and Ann Everatt, vice president, Academic at Lambton College.

Lambton College and the Lambton Kent District School Board (LKDSB) are partnering to form a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) pathway for high-school students. There is an increase of STEM-related occupations opening in the Lambton County area, and the partnership is recognizing the need to prepare students to fill these roles.

STEM is an internationally recognized term that encourages and markets these four subject areas to future students and employees. STEM education plays a critical role in our country’s competitiveness and our future economic prosperity by providing knowledge and proficiency in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. 

Locally, the Sarnia Lambton Workforce Development Board (SLWDB) has identified 55 STEM related occupations in the Lambton County area.  In addition, the SLWDB identified that there will be a local shortage of skilled workers in the future in areas such as the petrochemical industry, green energy and health related occupations.

“The Sarnia Lambton Workforce Development’s vision paper clearly focuses on the need to educate students in the STEM subjects to prepare them for the jobs of the future and to retain them in our community,” says Judith Morris, President and CEO of Lambton College. “The result is a very positive partnership with Lambton College and the LKDSB and the development of this very innovative project.”

To increase and to promote STEM education within our community, this partnership will offer college bound students the opportunity to participate in a unique STEM experience at the college.  25 Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) students will attend Lambton College full-time in their last semester of high school.  While at the college, the students will be taught two secondary credits by a secondary teacher.  Students will select one of the math courses which will be taught in a blended learning format. In addition, the students will take one or two dual credits that are directly related to their SHSM sector. 

“Our STEM Pilot is an example where LKDSB staff is working collaboratively with Lambton College utilizing an innovative mind set. This pilot will be extremely advantageous to students and staff both within our secondary schools and at our local college,” says Jim Costello, Director of Education, LKDSB.

SHSM students will be participating in an enriched reach-ahead activity directly related to their sector as well as earning up to two major credits from the bundle of required credits.  Students who successfully complete all of the SHSM requirements will graduate with an SHSM Red Seal Diploma while being exposed to the college environment. 

The LKDSB will hold a Parents Night at Lambton College on April 24, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. to provide additional information to those interested. Taking place at the Lambton INN, attendees can learn more about the partnership. 

More information on the STEM partnership and the Parents Night event is available by calling Caroline White at 519-336-1500 ext. 31571, or by email at whiteca@lkdsb.net.

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