About Iowa STEM

Tomorrow STEMs from Iowans

Effective July 1, 2023, the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council will become part of the Iowa Department of Education. This change is being made as part of a broader state government realignment to bring together entities working with similar subject matter. Iowans can expect the same quality services that they have come to expect from the STEM Council while benefiting from strengthened connections and coordination between programs that increase interest and achievement in STEM studies and careers.

Please contact the Iowa Department of Education at ed.comms@iowa.gov with any questions about the alignment.

Mission Statement

The Governor’s STEM Advisory Council mission is increasing interest and achievement in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) studies and careers through partnerships engaging preK-12 students, parents, educators, employers, non-profits, policy leaders and others. The Council provides opportunities that inspire Iowa’s young people to become innovative, enterprising contributors to our future workforce and the quality of life in our communities.

What is STEM?

STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

  • Science—Study of the nature of the universe
  • Technology—Applying information to the design of goods and services
  • Engineering—Application of knowledge for the benefit of humanity
  • Mathematics—Universal language of nature

The goal of increasing STEM interest and achievement is critical to regaining Iowa's historic legacy as a leader in education and workforce development. In fact, STEM is a vital economic development advantage for quality job growth in our state. STEM graduates are in great demand to meet current and future workforce needs.

Created with the goal of increasing STEM interest and achievement, the STEM Council is a collaboration of bipartisan Iowa legislators, educators, business, nonprofits, students and families focused on improving STEM opportunities and awareness in Iowa.

The STEM Council follows this definition of STEM:

“…an interdisciplinary approach to learning where rigorous academic concepts are coupled with real-world lessons as students apply science, technology, engineering and mathematics in contexts that make connections between school, community, work and the global enterprise enabling the development of STEM literacy and with it the ability to compete in the new economy.”

 - Tsupros, N., Kohler, R., & Hallinen, J. (2009). STEM education: A project to identify the missing components. Intermediate Unit 1: Center for STEM Education and Leonard Gelfand Center for Service Learning and Outreach, Carnegie Mellon University, Pennsylvania.

What is a STEM job?

The Iowa Governor's STEM Advisory Council

The Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council is a made up of leaders in higher education, business, pre-K through 12 educators, as well as state and local government officials. The STEM Council is led by Governor Kim Reynolds. The executive director of the Iowa Governor's STEM Advisory Council is Jeff Weld.

There are a total of 62 members on the STEM Council, including 17 members that comprise the Executive Committee.