Last week Tim Kaine of Virginia accepted his nomination as vice president of the United States on the Democratic ticket.
In 2015 Senator Tim Kaine spoke at the 2015 K-12 STEM Symposium, along with is wife Ann Holton. At the time, Holton was Virginia’s Secretary of Education, under Governor Terry McAuliffe.
As a deep supporter of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), Kaine first saw the value of STEM education while working at his family’s business. The employees he worked with did not have college degrees but had careers in technical STEM education. With this, the welders and ironworkers were able to create tremendous, individualized pieces. Years later, while attending Harvard Law School, Kaine took a year-long sabbatical in order to work with Jesuit missionaries in Honduras. He ran a welding and carpentry school that once taught 25 kids. The school now teaches over 325 students each year.
While Tim Kaine was running for Governor, he advocated for excellent career and technical programs with the Governor’s School label. He knew that Governor’s School could serve purposes in addition to college preparations and that wonderful things can be achieved with a technical degree. Kaine co-founded the notion of the Governor’s Career and Technical Academies, programs for students to help them obtain technical and scientific disciplines in addition to their coursework at school.
When Kaine first became a member of the Senate, he was disappointed when he was unable to join the education committee. Rather than giving up on education, he began to work on career and technical education (CTE) opportunities in Virginia, a champion of this type of learning in Virginia.
Kaine concluded his remarks by stressing that the country relies deeply on more and more people graduating in CTE and STEM fields and that waiting until college is waiting too long; you have to start early.