Blog post by Christine Ross
Christine Ross, the president and CEO of the Maryland Chamber of Commerce, has 20 years of leadership experience in the business community. She is a visionary coalition builder guiding the Maryland Chamber’s efforts to improve competitiveness, attract and retain talent, grow jobs, engage the community and provide legislative advocacy.
The Maryland Chamber Foundation is pleased to announce that it is now accepting applications for the 2020 Teacher Externship Program, a four-week program in July that connects high school science, technology, engineering, arts and math teachers with business partners to gain hands-on experience in industries related to the subjects they teach. The goal is for teachers to then use their newfound knowledge and real-world experiences to enhance their curriculum and educate their students on the skills required to enter the workforce of the future.
Last summer, we launched our pilot program and placed three teacher externs at manufacturing companies Stanley Black & Decker, Volvo and Toroid/Arcon Welding. Externs were paid a stipend and gained invaluable experiences and perspectives that they can share with their students—through field trips, enhanced lessons, in-classroom visits from new business connections, and much more.
In addition, the Maryland State Department of Education has agreed to give participating teachers up to four continuing professional development credits, which is a testament to the strength of this meaningful program.
Last summer, David Lee Miles, a teacher at Parkside High School in Salisbury, was an extern at Toroid and Toroid’s sister company, Arcon Welding. He said he learned a “tremendous amount about Toroid transformers and how a company thrives.” He also noted that nearly all of the engineers he worked with at Toroid/Arcon Welding had already come to his classroom to interact with his graduating senior students. Late last month, for example, some of the engineers critiqued his students’ design statements for their senior capstone projects.
“I am able to better equip my students with knowledge and skills that will directly relate to the current skills used by industry experts in our local area,” said David, who is leading his students to design a transformer to power a car audio system with minimal noise interference, a project inspired by his time at Toroid. “From the owner all the way down to the production workers, Toroid/Arcon Welding is one big team. … I will always fondly remember my time spent with them.”
All high school science, technology, engineering, arts, and math teachers (grades 9-12) in Maryland public schools are encouraged to apply. Please note that the number of extern opportunities is yet to be determined and can be capped, based on funding, at any time by the Maryland Chamber Foundation.
If you are a teacher who would like to apply for a summer externship, please click here. If you are interested in helping to fund this worthwhile program and sponsor an extern, please call us at 410-269-0642. We look forward to seeing what July 2020 has in store for our second round of teacher externs!