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Launch of the Global STEM Alliance
New York, 23 September, 2014: The Global Partnerships Forum was privileged to serve as co-host with The New York Academy of Sciences, in collaboration with UNESCO, the International Telecommunication Union and the Permanent Mission of Malaysia, for the launch of the Global STEM Alliance. The launch took place on September 22, 2014 at the United Nations Headquarters and was an official side event of the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
Today, there is a critical shortage in the global STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) workforce, and a lack of experts to address the challenges we face as a global community. The Global STEM Alliance is an initiative that will address this crisis, which exists in both developed and developing countries, by encouraging and providing access to STEM education for students worldwide, through collaborative partnerships with over 70 governments, industry experts, philanthropists, schools, NGOs and leading academic institutions in over 50 countries.
We were privileged to host His Excellency Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia, a longtime and strong supporter of STEM education, who remarked, "As we all know, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) are at the heart of modern life and provide the foundations for economic prosperity. The purpose of driving STEM education is not only to create economic opportunity for individuals; it's to provide the fuel needed to power a science and technology driven economy. STEM and therefore STEM education - are vital to our future - the future of our country and the future of our children."
Mr. Ellis Rubinstein, President and CEO of The New York Academy of Sciences, pledged, "Together, we'll create a new global STEM ecosystem and build the next generation of STEM leaders who will confront the biggest challenges of our time-climate change, famine, global epidemics-through cross-generational, transnational collaboration."
Ms. Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, remarked on the STEM launch in the context of the post-2015 agenda, stating, “Every country today is seeking new sources of dynamism, new levers for sustainable development – this is why STEM is so important.”
The launch also announced the Alliance’s first major new initiative, which will be the creation and implementation of Junior Academy, a virtual learning and research platform that will inspire, connect and prepare STEM students worldwide. Through this platform the Alliance will include course work and authentic virtual research experiences, as well as facilitate global mentoring and networking among top scientists and STEM students.
Dr. Hamadoun Touré, ITU Secretary General, recipient of the STEM Heroes Award, delivered the closing remarks, and spoke about the necessity of ICTs such as the Junior Academy, and the role they will play in shaping our future. “At the ITU, the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies, we have a very clear picture of how important ICTs are in the modern world. In fact, I would go so far as to say that ICTs are now an essential enabler of social and economic development across all nations. As we move forward, they will be key in delivering step-change benefits in the delivery of healthcare and education, for example, as well in helping us to address the major issues of our time.”
The Global Partnerships Forum was honoured to partner with The New York Academy of Sciences’ team led by Mr. Ellis Rubinstein, President and CEO. The GPF is especially grateful to Ms. TC Westcott, Chief Operating Officer, and her team, including, Ms. Celina Morgan-Standard, Senior Vice President, Global Business Development; Ms. Diane Fusilli, Executive Director of Communications; Ms. Erica Cullman, Executive Director of Operations; Ms. Katherine Underwood, Director, Principal Gifts; Ms. Crystal Ocampo, Senior Meetings Coordinator, Meeting & Event Operations; Mr. Larry Smith, Special Assistant; Ms. Stacy-Ann Ashley, Communications Associate; Ms. Carolina Seguin; and Ms. Coleen Thomas for being excellent collaborators.
Please follow the link to find the final programme.