STEM BEST® (Businesses Engaging Students and Teachers) Program
The Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council has awarded 75 STEM BEST® Programs since 2014 with an opportunity to grow a series of community collaborations involving school+business partnerships. Working side-by-side, teachers and industry professionals will craft curriculum and projects that prepare students for exciting career pathways in the STEM fields of manufacturing, information technology, bioscience (agriculture and medicine), finance, and more.
“The STEM BEST satellite model will allow students to experience the industry or business environment firsthand. That experience is vital to prepare students for STEM success in college or career training after high school, and it allows business and industry to introduce students to outstanding career opportunities.”
–Governor Kim Reynolds, co-chair of the STEM Council
APPLICATION AND PROGRAM TIMELINE
- March 8, 2021: Application portal opens
- May 10, 2021: Application due by 11:59pm
- May-June, 2021: Application Review
- July-August 2021: Awards Announced
- August 2021 - June 2022: STEM BEST Program Planning and Implementation
- January 30, 2022: Progress Report 1 Due
- May 31, 2022: Progress Report 2 and final invoice must be submitted to:
Iowa Governor's STEM Advisory Council, Attn: Program Manager, 214 East Bartlett Hall, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA 50614
- June 15, 2023: Final Report Due
Applications for STEM BEST® Program must be submitted by Iowa public and non-public school districts and buildings serving students in grades K-12. Clusters of schools and/or districts are encouraged to apply. This requirement then verifies that the submitting entity will be the responsible fiscal agent. The application must also contain evidence of the roles assumed by the partnering school/districts and other identified partners.
Different school buildings within an Iowa district may submit an independent STEM BEST proposal in the same proposal period. Individual school buildings may not submit more than one proposal in the same proposal period, unless one is for school-specific BEST creation and another is part of a multi-district consortium. In instances where this policy does not apply, please contact the Governor's STEM Advisory Council, info@IowaSTEM.org
For those applicants who have previously received a STEM BEST® Program award or who intend to connect to a past STEM BEST® Program awardee, please note that there is an additional required section in the proposal form that must be completed as part of the submission process. This section will be thoroughly reviewed to determine merits of the expanded program model with regards to student engagement, specific measurable outcomes and elements of financial need.
An applicant is required to provide a 1:1 match, up to $25,000. The match may be either cash and/or in-kind support. The match may be contributed by the applicant or a community partner. To be eligible as match, the cash and/or in-kind contribution must be provided during the funding period of the STEM BEST® Program award.
- STEM BEST Program Review Process
- STEM BEST Rubric
- Applicant and Program Lead Definition
- STEM BEST Application Template - All applications must be submitted through the online portal to be considered eligible.
- Webinar Recording: “Grant writing 101”
- Key Attributes to a STEM BEST Proposal
- Webinar Recording: “How to navigate the online database for application submission.”
- Community-Based Partnerships
- Business Partner Handbook
- Webinar Recording: “Tips to building partnerships with local business and industry.”
- Examples of Cost Share
- Assigning a Value to Cost-Share
- Webinar Recording: “Cost-Share: What is it and how do I plan for it.”