2015 K-12 STEM Symposium: Virginia Senator Tim Kaine and Virginia Secretary of Education Anne Holton

Virginia Senator Tim Kaine addresses STEM Symposium attendees

Virginia Senator Tim Kaine addresses STEM Symposium attendees. Photo credit Andrew Goldblatt

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) addressed the 2015 K-12 STEM Symposium on Saturday, March 7, on the importance of generating interest and passion for the science and technology fields early on in children’s lives in order to properly equip the next generation for future workforce innovation and needs.

Sen. Kaine was accompanied by his wife, Anne Holton, who currently serves as the Virginia Secretary of Education. Holton’s father started the Governor’s School Programs of Virginia.

“To me personally, I grew up in a house where my dad was the owner of a small business, a welding company. What I saw was tremendous artistry by the welders and iron workers who worked at my dad’s business,” Sen. Kaine said (Twitter: @timkaine). “That created in me a real belief in STEM and technical education.”

Sen. Kaine said his focus while in the Senate has been on Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs, which have been eliminated from all except for one high school in Virginia.

“You can do wonderful things in life with a technical degree,” he said. “I have been working on career and technical education [legislation]within the Senate with Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Johnny Issacson (R-GA). The group is also working on programs to incentivize teachers and for the training of more STEM and CTE teachers.

“STEM matters deeply to the success of our country,” Sen. Kaine continued. “We aren’t producing nearly enough scientists or engineers. You have to start early.”

“What I think is so cool about STEM is that this is all about how we make new things and new opportunities,” Holton said. “I visit schools all over Virginia, and it’s fun for our generation to watch what you, your generation, are doing.”

Click here to watch Sen. Kaine’s speech in its entirety.

The 2015 K-12 STEM Symposium was possible from the support of many local organizations, including Presenting Sponsor Leidos, Platinum Sponsor Vencore and Venue Sponsor The Nysmith School

Kaine, Tim GWU group

Senator Tim Kaine (D-Va) and Secretary Ann Holton (Education, Virginia) with George Mason University Students at the 2015 K-12 STEM Symposium

 

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