APS and AIP Announce New STEM Education Policy Fellowship Partnering with U.S. Department of Education

By Tawanda W. Johnson and Jason Bardi

The American Physical Society (APS) and the American Institute of Physics (AIP) recently announced a new jointly sponsored STEM Education Policy Fellowship that will fund a scientist or educator for up to two years, sending him/her to the U.S. Department of Education where they will work intensively on education policy and programs related to science, technology, engineering an mathematics (STEM).

APS and AIP will begin accepting applications immediately from qualified applicants. The first Fellow will be selected this fall and will begin working in January 2014. More information on the Fellowship and applications for the program may be accessed at the STEM Education Policy Fellowship web page.

"We started this new program in recognition of the increased emphasis on STEM education at the Department of Education," said APS Executive Officer Kate Kirby. "The STEM Education Policy Fellowship offers scientists with expertise in and passion for STEM education an opportunity to come to Washington D.C. to help shape science education policy critical to our nation's future. I think that the Department of Education will benefit greatly from the presence and contributions of this Fellow."

"Improving STEM education is a bi-partisan national priority that is key to our nation's economic and national security," said H. Frederick Dylla, AIP Executive Director and CEO. "As the U.S. Department of Education ramps up its portfolio of STEM programs and initiatives, the STEM Education Policy Fellow will be there to provide relevant perspective and important guidance."

The APS-AIP Fellow will work within the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development (OPEPD), which is responsible for coordinating and developing major policy initiatives and preparing the department's more than $71 billion annual budget request. The office aims to craft policies that support President Obama's goals of closing the achievement gap in science and mathematics and making the United States first in the world in college completion by 2020.

While working at the OPEPD, the APS-AIP STEM Education Policy Fellow will conduct research analysis, help define policy priorities, attend congressional hearings and build partnerships with other agencies and private organizations. The Fellow must belong to one of AIP's member societies and hold a doctorate in a physical sciences discipline. Successful candidates will also demonstrate outstanding communication skills, familiarity with education policy, and a strong commitment to serve society. The term of the Fellowship is not less than one year and not to exceed two years and carries a stipend of $70,000.

Jason Bardi is director of media services for AIP.

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