ICR Future is a coalition of schools, organizations, and employers working together to
develop the future workforce in Iowa City-Cedar Rapids (ICR).
August 2018
As summer draws to a close, I am excited to report that the collaboration between educators, industry experts, education partners and students has continued throughout the summer months. The ICR Future Career Connected Learning Coalition will be coming back together on September 14th to share their goals, strategies and metrics for our region in the areas of: Computer Science, Project Based Learning & Soft Skills, Career Exploration, Work- Based Learning and Pathways Curriculum Mapping.

During the fall season there is an overwhelming sense of transition. We are certainly feeling it in our house as one goes off to college and we move on from the elementary school our children have attended after 13 years. As the school year begins there is excitement, and new opportunities await for our teachers and students. As many educators and schools have been exploring how best to prepare students and transition into new modes of teaching and learning, I was reminded of the importance of listening to the customer, the students. This summer I had the opportunity to participate in a workshop on the purpose of school through RIPE (Reimagine Iowa City Public Education) and the Iowa Youth Writing Project. It was eye opening. Additional workshops were held for over 100 teens from around the area, providing them an opportunity to explore the purpose of education. Kudos to Jennifer New who took on this brave endeavor to explore with teenagers how the purpose of education is evolving and what that means for our institutions. Check out the Spoken Word video below from a Senior at City High and the article on RIPE to learn more about this unique experience.

In addition to working on ICR Future strategies and metrics this summer, our coalition has been developing the new ICR Future Career Resource Hub for students, parents, educators and business. The goal of the new website is help connect educators, students and parents to the career pathways and information on the most in demand jobs in our region. We plan to launch the new website this fall. Many great partners have assisted in building the hub and we are so thankful to them for their willingness to collaborate and partner in this work. When we put the interests of students first, everyone wins.

If you are interested in joining the ICR Future Coalition or would like more details, please contact me at Kmoreland@icriowa.org .


Kate Moreland
Director of Career Development

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.”   WB Yeats
Read more about RIPE here https://littlevillagemag.com/ripe-iywp-summer-program/
Teachers Spend the Summer Receiving STEM Innovator Training

This summer I had the opportunity to talk with educators who were participating in the STEM Innovator Ed Camp through the Jacobson Institute at the University of Iowa . This professional development is designed for teachers who want strategies and methods for infusing STEM innovation and entrepreneurship into their curriculum. Under the direction of Leslie Flynn, Tippie professor of STEM Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and Dawn Bowlus, Institute Director, middle and high school teachers from Iowa, Illinois, California and New Jersey were onsite for the intensive training in July. It was inspiring to talk with participants about the transformation of education and the mind shift required for that change.

Participating teachers will now bring this method back to their classrooms, allowing students to work on real world problems, engage in collaborative teams, leverage resources and design viable solutions to community needs. STEM Innovator® has trained 256 teachers in nine states since 2013, with an estimated impact on nearly 63,000 students.

The Jacobson Institute is helping to lead the ICR Future Problem-Based Learning and Soft Skills task force in partnership with ACT. If you are interested in joining the ICR Future coalition or would like more information, please contact Kate Moreland at  Kmoreland@icriowa.org .
Businesses Needed for Fall 2018 Johnson County STEM Festival

On Wednesday, October 10 from 4:00 – 7:00, the Southeast Iowa STEM Hub, Iowa City Community School District, Kirkwood Community College, and ICR IOWA will be hosting the Johnson County STEM Festival at the Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa. This event will be a great opportunity to ignite student interest in science, technology, engineering and math and help connect youth and their parents to great opportunities in the corridor. 

STEM education partners are invited to have a hands-on booth for about 1,000 K-12 students and their parents during the event. To register your booth, please complete the following form
NewBoCo Offering Computer Science and Professional Development

NewBoCo has been working with Code.org and Iowa’s veteran K-5 facilitators to add the Computer Science Fundamentals workshops to our K-12 professional development offerings. We are excited to announce that NewBoCo will now be offering professional learning opportunities for all of K-12!

If you are interested in integrating computer science content in elementary grades, without needing a time turner to fit more activities into your day, check out workshops available in Iowa  here , or contact samantha@newbo.co  to schedule a workshop near you! These workshops are available at no-cost to classroom teachers. Additional opportunities for coding education K-12 students can be found here .
Summer Internship Highlights

Workplace Learning Connection, a part of Kirkwood Community College, coordinated hundreds of internships throughout the summer for local high students. These critical experiences help students determine if a certain field is right for them and provides real world learning to prepare students for the future of work. To learn more about the amazing summer experiences visit the WPLC Facebook page . Fall internships open soon and we need more businesses offering job shadows and internships. If your business wants to learn more about how you can engage your future workforce through WLC programs, simply go to their  WLC volunteer page , complete the inquiry and a friendly WLC team member will assist you!
Educators Take Part in STEM Scale Up Programming

Hundreds of Iowa educators from across Iowa are taking part in STEM Scale-Up Program training for implementation of the programs this fall. Nearly 600 STEM Scale-Up Program applications were awarded, impacting nearly 100,000 students during the 2018-2019 academic year.
The STEM Council reviewed and selected a menu of   ten high-quality STEM programs   last January to “scale up” in Iowa’s PreK-12 schools, after school programs and other educational settings for the upcoming academic year. Interested Iowa educators were able to apply for one or more of these STEM Scale-Up Programs.
Iowa’s regional STEM managers, guided by their regional STEM advisory boards, selected recipients throughout the state based on need, student diversity, geographic distribution, capacity to sustain, and other factors. Since 2012, funding from the Iowa legislature has enabled more than 500,000 PreK-12 Iowans to take part in these proven programs.
Results from the   annual Iowa STEM evaluation report   show students who participated in the STEM Scale-Up Program score higher on the Iowa Assessments in National Percentile Rank by four points in science and three points in mathematics and reading compared to nonparticipating students statewide. Participants also expressed a stronger interest in pursuing a STEM career in Iowa.

Benton Development Group
Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance
Future Ready Iowa
Grant Wood Area Education Agency
Iowa Big
Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce
Iowa City Area Development Group
Iowa Department of Education
Iowa Workforce Development
Junior Achievement of Eastern Iowa
Kirkwood Community College
Kirkwood Industry Sector Boards
Kirkwood Workplace Learning Connection
MEDCO Community Promise
Regional Career and Technical Education Planning Partnership
School Districts throughout ICR
Southeast Iowa STEM Region
Stairway 5
STEM Innovator
University of Iowa Jacobson Institute for Youth Entrepreneurship

To join our coalition, contact Kate Moreland at kmoreland@icriowa.org.
ICR IOWA is a joint venture between the  Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance  and the  Iowa City Area Development Group .

Our mission is to accelerate high-quality job growth and capital investment
in our seven-county region.