Charles Trovato, program administrator in the Office of Professional Development and Curriculum at the Berks County Intermediate Unit, has been accepted as one of 31 ambassadors in the Pennsylvania STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) Ambassador Program, which aims to shape the future of STEM education in the Commonwealth by targeting vital policy conversations to legislative leadership in the areas of STEM Learning ecosystems, computer science, state and federal policy for formal and informal education, and workforce needs.

PA STEM Ambassadors met for an inaugural training session on Feb. 28 at the Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network (PaTTAN), a statewide training and professional development organization through the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education.

Trovato has brought awareness and practical application of STEM to all content areas through the work of both understanding by design and integrated curriculum models, inquiry-based instruction, blended learning, and project-based learning. He is working to support educators and administrators in Berks County and throughout the Commonwealth on the power of integrated and transdisciplinary STEM education.

Representing leaders and emerging leaders in corporate, PreK-12 and higher education, and afterschool programs from 22 counties, PA STEM Ambassadors will invest the next nine months in training and policy development to share expertise and content knowledge with influential stakeholders to help develop a stronger voice in shaping STEM education policy issues.

“In order for Pennsylvania to lead in STEM policy, we need to develop leaders across the state to advocate for bipartisan support in advancing STEM Education policies and to have the respect and influence to affect change,” said Laura Saccente, director of Pennsylvania Statewide Afterschool and Youth Development Network (PSAYDN). “PA STEM Ambassadors have been a vital part in shaping STEM education and workforce policies.”

“As a STEM Ambassador, I look forward to discussing the necessary shifts needed in education to sustain and uphold the integrity of the Pennsylvania Department of Education's mission, vision, goals and definition for integrated STEM across the Commonwealth,” said Trovato.

PSAYDN collaborated with the Education Policy and Leadership Center (EPLC), the national STEM Education Coalition, the Afterschool Alliance, 2018 National STEM Ambassador Jeff Remington and staff from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, through the PA STEM Education Coalition, to provide training support to the ambassadors.

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