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Tuesday 12 November 2019
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Garcia commends Shell for STEM education efforts

NIHERST and Shell sign 3-year contract

Minister of Education Anthony Garcia
Minister of Education Anthony Garcia

NARISSA FRASER

EDUCATION minister Anthony Garcia says Shell TT Ltd’s involvement in the development of STEM (Science, technology, engineering, mathematics) education in TT is a “testament” of the company’s commitment.

He made the statement on Wednesday at the official signing ceremony for a three-year contract between Shell and the National Institute of Higher Education (NIHERST) at the Education Towers, Port of Spain.

“The Ministry of Education is pleased to be, yet again, a part of the collaboration between public and private sector into education.

“The signing of the memorandum of understanding today upholds the ministry’s drive to promote quality, access, equity and good governance in education by allowing students to explore 21st century skills for learning and development.”

NIHERST will provide services such as the management of Shell’s STEM centres, coordination of the Science Bus programme and conducting a series of workshops and exercises to helps students with coursework.

The minister said the STEM Bus programme will make the services available to remote areas, to “ensure equitable access for all.”

He said he has great confidence in the Institute’s abilities to execute all plans.

NIHERST will also oversee the annual First LEGO League (FLL) competition in March 2020, and a biennial Sci-TechKnoFest exhibition. Sci-TechKnoFest is a local STEM exhibition which began in 1997, with its most recent staging having been in 2013. The next staging will be held in the final quarter of 2020, which Shell will partly sponsor.

NIHERST chairman Professor Emeritus Mellowes said he hopes STEM education and development will not only continue, but improve in TT.

“We recognise that a significant segment of our target population continues to be young adults, young people and children. We believe that the future of science, technology and innovation therefore lies with the young people of our nation.

“Some would say the future lies in our book bags, it seems it lies in technology, innovation, in computers, etc. That is where we’re going.”

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