Raytheon teaching program cultivates STEM learning - Tucson News Now

Raytheon teaching program cultivates STEM learning

(Source: Tucson News Now) (Source: Tucson News Now)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

One of the world's biggest defense companies is taking its talents into public school classrooms across southern Arizona.

Missile technology may not be the easiest thing to teach to high school students, but a summer program offered by Raytheon has shown it's not so complicated after all.

Raytheon has been collaborating with the University of Arizona's Teaching in Industry program for the past six years.

Every summer, the company invites 10 teachers to work beside Raytheon employees and learn engineering skills that they can take to their classrooms when school begins in August.

"It's a little difficult I think to teach math without the application for some students and so I think it's critically important that all parts of it go together and the kids are presented with the big picture of why each part of STEM is important," program intern Ann Marie Condes said.

Condes teaches engineering at Palo Verde High Magnet School. She joined the Teaching in Industry program this summer for its professional development program.

Over the past eight weeks, Condes learned the intricacies of coding, which she plans to incorporate in her curriculum

"There's a fear. Some students feel they can't do it. So I think our job as teachers, especially an engineering or science teacher, is to provide opportunities for the kids to feel successful that they can do it," Condes said.

"Industry is something we want to monitor in our classroom. Especially in the engineering classroom," Condes said.

Participating teachers receive credit toward earning their master's degrees in teacher education and get paid the equivalent of a Raytheon engineer's salary during the program.

In turn, the students they teach receive industry-based STEM education, and Raytheon helps cultivate an interest in engineering among those young students. In short, everybody wins.

"Having enough engineers and scientists and people with mathematics and physics and all disciplines of engineering backgrounds is critical to our success and is critical to the nation, to have people who could help develop those next technologies, both for consumer use and for the Department of Defense," Raytheon Deputy Vice President of Engineering Laura McGill said.

More information on the teaching intern program can be found here:

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