BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
LEE COUNTY – A member of the Lee County Economic Development Group was named a co-chair of the Southeast Iowa STEM Region Advisory Board last week.
Dana Millard, who has served on the STEM board of the past six years was picked by her peers on the board to server with Le Claire’s Daniel D’Allesandro for the next year.
Millard has also served on the statewide STEM Communications Advisory Committee for the past three years. She has worked to connect educators and industry to provide opportunities to youth and inform them about the STEM careers available in Iowa.
“I see this year as a year of STEM innovation, where we cannot do things like we’ve always done, so as a state we have to try new things to help bolster STEM Education and connect what we’re doing in the classroom to local careers,” Millard said Monday,
“One of my goals is to increase computer science opportunities for our students and tie it back to careers in robotics, data analytics, PLC programing and the Internet of things. There’s more to computer science than coding or cyber security. You’d be surprised at how many high tech and STEM jobs are in our area.”
Being the co-chair gives Millard a seat at the state STEM Board where new programs are developed and funding decisions are made.
“I will also be responsible for agenda items of our regional board and be able to shape the conversation at a more local level to better reach rural students, like the ones in Lee County, with STEM programming,” she added.
The Governor’s STEM Advisory Board is comprised of some of the area’s most active members of STEM fields through government, education, and industry. The SE Iowa Region covers 66 school districts and 17 counties on the eastern portion of the state. She will be representing our region at the state level, sharing best practices and contributing to the future of STEM education.