Developing a Scalable STEM Career Development Program for Elementary School-Aged Students

Published:2019, Journal of Stem Outreach
Vol 2, December 2019
Authors:San Miguel S, McDavid L, Parker L, Simons M

STEM education, elementary, scalable, veterinary medicine

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This article describes an approach to designing a scalable career development curriculum for elementary school students using minimal-cost and readily available resources. Content experts, veterinary medical students, univer-sity staff, teachers, community partners, evaluation experts, and a children’s book illustrator developed a library of low-cost, culturally responsive, fun, and educationally engaging lessons to expose elementary school-aged students to scientific knowledge and careers in veterinary medicine. The home team piloted and evaluated the approach at a local community center. Teams in eight other states were provided materials to pilot and assess the program. Seven of those teams successfully piloted the program and provided evidence of child engagement. Although models, props, and other costly supplies enhance delivery of Science Technology Engineering and Math lessons, our experience with the delivery of this curriculum was proof of concept that a low-cost curricular model is one strategy to facilitate scaling and sustainability of an engaging veterinary science curriculum.