November 16, 2010

Turning STEM Into STEAM: A National Call to Action with House Resolution 1702

Rhode Island School of Design (RISD)
a resolutionArtH.Res 1702art + design = innovationYou can do so with just 5 minutes of your time by visiting this link

Madam Speaker, today I introduced the STEM to STEAM resolution, which recognizes the importance of art and design in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields.

Art and design advance the understanding of STEM learning and collaboration. In classrooms and laboratories across the country, the innovative practices of art and design play an essential role in improving STEM education and advancing STEM research. In order to strengthen the pipeline of future artists and designers, we must add STEAM to legislation that shapes the future of our education system, especially the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the America Competes Act. Congress must also encourage institutions of higher education to incorporate art and design into their STEM curricula.

Art and design contribute real solutions to our everyday lives, distinguish America’s products in a global marketplace, and create opportunity for economic growth in the United States. Artists and designers can effectively communicate complex data and scientific information to multiple stakeholders and broad audiences. The tools and methods they use also offer new models for creative problem-solving and interdisciplinary partnerships in our growing 21st Century economy. For instance, they are integral in planning sustainable neighborhoods, renewable energy initiatives, and health information technologies. They also play a critical role in the development of modern technology to support new American manufacturing opportunities.

It is also important to seek collaboration among the different federal agencies that oversee STEM programs. That is why I recommend the creation of a STEM to STEAM Council, which would bring together artists, designers, education and business leaders, and federal agencies to facilitate a comprehensive approach to incorporate art and design into Federal STEM programs.

Thank you!

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