High School Enterprise
The High School Enterprise (HSE) project builds on earlier successes with college students and extends that strategy to eight high schools through an after-school program. The project establishes and assesses a model which uses students from grades 9-12 organized into active, applied STEM learning communities focused on client needs. HSE teams participate in "virtual" companies that provide technical services to actual clients and develop products intended for ultimate distribution through the marketplace. HSE team projects are STEM-based with an emphasis on ICT. The program includes eight high schools in Michigan and Puerto Rico that are located in rural, suburban, and inner city communities that have diverse characteristics (all income ranges, high populations of students from underrepresented groups). Deliverables include an HSE model and training manual adaptable by high schools nationally and knowledge about why HSE as an after-school intervention activity has the impact that it does with the targeted student groups in the participating high schools. The proposal team is partnering with ASME, which provides built-in connections with local university student chapters and design teams, to examine one possible model for HSE scale-up. In addition, the team is developing a model for establishing the local sustainable funding that is required to prevent participating high schools from incurring any substantial costs.