Ingenuity is Made Here Featuring Education for Tomorrow Alliance
10 Feb 2022
More Is Made Here, Area Companies
Collaboration between local businesses and educational partners is building an innovative and robust workforce for the future of Conroe – a workforce prepared to solve big problems with bigger solutions. The spirit of discovery and cooperation throughout the Conroe community is leading to a modern economic environment with unlimited potential. Ingenuity is Made Here.
Education for Tomorrow Alliance (EfTA), a local nonprofit with the mission to cultivate education and community partnerships that advance student success, is out front on giving students opportunities to explore modern careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Conroe Independent School District and several area private schools participate in EfTA programs. Through hands on experiences and unique connections, EfTA brings ingenuity to life.
EfTA utilizes five core programs—Career Connections, Future Focus, Student Internship, Next Generation Leadership, and SCI://TECH Expo—to help prepare students for future success. These programs are closely connected with local business partners giving companies an opportunity to engage with future leaders.
There may not be a better showcase of ingenuity than the SCI://TECH Expo, one of the largest science fair competitions in the nation. A series of 13 STEM events held January through March, SCI://TECH is designed to complement lessons students learn in school by giving a more firsthand approach. SCI://TECH is available for students Kindergarten to 12th grade looking to enhance elements they learn in the classroom.
“SCI://TECH students are thinking at such a high level about how to turn problems into solutions. It’s very exciting to see that ability in our community,” said EfTA President Monica Bomkamp Enia. “We live in an area where there’s a lot of emphasis on STEM education. We want to make the STEM experience exceptional.”
As part of SCI://TECH, EfTA recently hosted the Chevron Phillips Chemical Senior High Science Fair in Conroe. High school students competed in the categories of engineering, life science, and physical science. An impressive list of winners, which included projects that searched for solutions to problems like invasive plant species, tracking glucose levels for diabetics, and instruments for the visually impaired, were honored February 5th in an awards ceremony at Lone Star College. Congressman Kevin Brady attended the ceremony and offered his unique perspective, which includes being involved in the creation of EfTA 30 years ago.
“You are going to shape the future in ways you can’t even imagine,” offered Brady to the award winners. “Ingenuity saved the world in the last two years. Science, technology, engineering, and math saved mankind. It’s so important to have the best and brightest minds in these fields and that’s why we’re so proud of your achievements.”
Alongside the brilliant young minds, a major takeaway from the ceremony was the community and business involvement. Several professionals attended to offer their support of the program. Not only do local companies financially support EfTA and SCI://TECH, but they are also actively involved with the judging and influence of these projects. Industry’s ability to be engaged with local students provides incredible access, value, and opportunity to local business.
“We are lucky to be in an area where industry is interested in innovation and asks students to think what’s possible,” added Bomkamp Enia. “Many employers volunteer because they want to give back, but there really is the potential to cultivate your future workforce. Through EfTA, businesses can engage with the best and brightest kids who are already interested in these fields.”
Ingenuity’s display in the Conroe area by way of EfTA is leading to growth and evolution for Conroe businesses. SCI://TECH reaches thousands of students every year and exposes them to the ways they can change the world through STEM. This exciting potential is worth celebrating, according to Congressman Brady.
“EfTA is making a huge difference in our community and our country. These are our academic heroes we’re honoring, cheering, and admiring,” added Brady. “The business community should be ecstatic because these kids are so bright and so sharp.”
Evidenced by the impressive students participating in SCI://TECH, and other EfTA programs, ingenuity is the present and future of Conroe. New and existing businesses have direct access to the sharpest minds and a chance to produce modern results from this pipeline. Through collaboration and innovation Conroe is thriving. Ingenuity is Made Here, and the world is better for it.