The Oklahoma Engineering Foundation strives to increase Oklahoma’s Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education opportunities.
Our organization has been around since 1975, providing STEM programs to middle and high school students. While our impact has been great throughout the years, I am extremely excited about the future growth potential of STEM education.
Our small but mighty organization must work every day to promote our programs and increase community awareness. I just recently joined this organization in late October 2014 and have quickly learned through talking with STEM leaders, that OEF has only one way to go in name recognition – UP!
Our main focus has been to provide quality STEM programs to Oklahoma’s youth, but with your support, our reach can become even greater. Here is a glimpse of our impact:
v Over 82,000 students and teachers have participated in the OEF Engineering Fairs
v Nearly 8,000 Mathletes have competed in the regional and state MATHCOUNTS competitions
v Over $310,000 in scholarships have been awarded to Oklahoma students studying Engineering in Oklahoma universities.
The work those before me have poured into these programs has been great and I’m honored to carry forward their efforts. But there is so much more do accomplish. With your help, I know we can increase these numbers as well as offer more STEM programs to students, teachers, and parents across the state and increase OEF’s impact within Oklahoma’s STEM education system.
The Oklahoma Department of Commerce projects 6,260 STEM job openings per year in Oklahoma over the next ten years. That is over 62,000 new jobs for Oklahomans.
Meanwhile, the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education indicate that Oklahoma has only graduated on average 4,171 STEM field graduates over the past three years.
A gaping disconnect remains between the demand and the supply for quality STEM professions in Oklahoma. Current research indicates that students must engage with engineering by middle school in order to be fully prepared for and able to remain loyal to the field throughout college.
The responsibility to attract these students falls to us. The Oklahoma Engineering Foundation and its partners—corporate and individual—must ENGAGE students by informing them of the true nature of the engineering field and the opportunities a STEM education can provide, ENCOURAGE students to develop the math, science, and critical thinking skills needed to succeed in engineering, and EMPOWER students to pursue engineering by offering programs and scholarships to ignite their creativity. If we accomplish these three things, a student is far more likely to continue on the engineering path and continue their STEM education.
Partnerships are vital to the future success of STEM education and the Oklahoma Engineering Foundation. I encourage you to join us in our quest to enhance STEM program opportunities for Oklahoma’s youth.
Together, we can reach out to the future industry leaders and ensure their STEM education is the best in the nation.
Together, we can Engineer Oklahoma...one student at a time.
Join me today and let’s build a stronger Oklahoma!
Adrianne Covington Graham
Oklahoma Engineering Foundation
Adrianne Covington Graham, a native Oklahoman, specializes in community engagement, advocacy, professional development, and education initiatives. She is a member of Leadership Oklahoma City Class 33, the best class ever.
Adrianne has worked in legislative communications for the Oklahoma State Senate and the Oklahoma Education Association and is the former Director of the Training & Development Center at OSU-OKC where she managed several adult education programs and grant initiatives. Adrianne has also served as Communications Director for a statewide political campaign.
She is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma where she earned a BA in Administrative Leadership and a Master’s of Human Relations with an emphasis in Organizational Development.
Adrianne is an education advocate and currently serves on the Youth Leadership Exchange Board along with many other community involvement board positions.
An experienced policy writer, Adrianne understands the technical nature of grant writing while also understanding the importance of relationship building in all fundraising efforts. She is the mother of a Kinesiology major at the University of Central Oklahoma and understands the importance of a quality STEM education at an early age. This is the basis of her desire to increase STEM education programs in Oklahoma as well as provide resources for parents to spark STEM interest in their children at an early age.