Washington D.C. - The Committee on Science, Space, and Technology today held its first in a series of hearings to highlight science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education activities across the nation, their role in inspiring and educating future generations, and their contribution to our future economic prosperity. 

Today’s hearing, STEM Education in Action: Learning Today…Leading Tomorrow, showcased the finalists, parents, teachers, and mentors of the ExploraVision Awards National Competition, an innovative STEM competition that is inspiring and motivating K-12 students, sponsored by Toshiba and the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA).

Committee Chairman,Rep. Ralph Hall (R-TX), congratulated all of the teams for their great accomplishments in prevailing over 4,000 entrants to win the competition.  “All of you are an inspiration to students, teachers, and parents around the country,” Hall said.

“The Federal government is investing several billions of dollars on STEM Education activities, primarily at the Department of Education and the National Science Foundation, but also in every agency under this Committee’s jurisdiction,” Hall continued.  “However, there are numerous companies, foundations, non-profit organizations, and other groups who are doing their own part, and on their own dime, to successfully promote STEM education and inspire our next generation of scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and leaders.”

Witnesses today represented four of the eight ExploraVision winning teams, who as part of their prize, received an expense-paid trip to Washington, DC.  Following the hearing, all teams set their winning projects on display for Members of Congress and staff to review.  As part of the competition, students were asked to research a technology of their choice and explore what that technology could be like in 20 years. Teams explored how their visions of technology could work and what breakthroughs are necessary to make their ideas a reality.

Hall concluded the hearing saying, “This nation has always been the leader in innovation, and our children and grandchildren, like the ones in front of us today, are the key to our future success.”

The following witnesses testified before the Committee:

Dr. Karen Lozano, Professor at University of Texas Pan American, Parent to Pablo Vidal and Mentor to the i.streets (Intelligent Streets) Discovery Montessori School Team from Edinburg, Texas

Master Pablo Vidal, 3rd grade student at Discovery Montessori School and member of the i.streets (Intelligent Streets) Team

Mrs. Brenda Conwell-Dudley, Parent to Jack Dudley and Mentor to the HEADS UP! Virginia Virtual Academy Team from Herndon, Virginia

Master Jack Dudley, 6th grade student at Virginia Virtual Academy and member of the HEADS UP! Team

Ms. Amy Attard, Science Teacher and Coach to the I-TBS: Intra-Trachea West Hills Middle School Team from West Bloomfield, Michigan

Miss Claudia Cooper, 7th grade student at West Hills Middle School and member of the I-TBS: Intra-Trachea Team

Ms. Anne Manwell, Science Teacher and Mentor to the 3Drenal: Kidney Bio-Printer Stuyvesant High School Team from New York, New York

Miss Alison Reed, 10th grade student at the Stuyvesant High School and member of the 3Drenal: Kidney Bio-Printer Team