Owens Announces Congressional STEM Competition

 Representative Bill Owens announced he’s hosting a Congressional Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Competition for high school students from New York’s 21st Congressional District.

 “Students who can master the STEM subjects will earn great jobs and lead the nation’s next period of economic growth,” Representative Bill Owens said. “I encourage young people to participate in this competition and gain exposure to the STEM fields.”

 For the first time, Members of Congress across the country are hosting STEM competitions in their districts. This year’s contest is focused on developing a working or conceptual software application. Students can participate by designing a working or conceptual software application and presenting it in a two minute YouTube video. In the spring, a panel of judges from the district will determine the best presentations. One winning student from the region will have their design featured at an interactive exhibit at the United States Capitol.

Details and the official contest rules will be posted on Rep. Owens’ website, Twitter and Facebook pages later this month. Participants will be able to submit their entries from February 1, 2014 until March 30, 2014. Teachers and students interested in participating should sign up for Rep. Owens’ E-Newsletter to receive regular updates on the contest and can call the congressman’s Washington, DC office at 202-225-4611 with any questions. Young app developers will find a list of helpful introductory resources at http://Owens.house.gov/news.

According to the U.S. Department of Education, just 16 percent of American high school students are proficient in mathematics and interested in a STEM career. The U.S. Department of Commerce reported Americans employed in the STEM fields earn 26 percent more than their non-STEM counterparts. Even if students do not work in the STEM fields, those with STEM backgrounds out-earn their peers.

Representative Owens has worked to create STEM jobs in the 21st Congressional District. He has written about the potential for economic growth associated with providing American workers with the skills they need to fill currently-open jobs in The Huffington Post.

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