by Jill Sible, Assistant Provost for Undergraduate Education, Virginia Tech
Ask any ten academic professionals, “What is STEAM?” and you are likely to get ten different answers. Yet, intuitively, they would agree that STEAM is important and probably have incorporated at least one STEAM facility into their master planning. (Broadly speaking, STEAM represents the productive intersection of STEM with the arts and humanities. Other definitions for STEAM are equally valid - one size does not fit all.)
I do believe that any plan to bring STEAM programming and facilities to a campus will benefit tremendously from a step back to consider the ‘why':
- Why do you need STEAM at your institution?
- What are the desired outcomes for a STEAM program?
To prime your thinking, I offer four possible outcomes for a STEAM program at your college and university and some examples of how these outcomes are pursued at my own institution, Virginia Tech.