Reagan Flowers - CSTEM
Founder and CEO
Dr. Reagan Flowers is the founder and CEO of CSTEM. Her pragmatic understanding of effective STEM education reform in classrooms globally has been instrumental in assisting with closing the achievement gap among ethnic-minority and underrepresented students. Dr. Flowers has led the organization in unprecedented expansion of services and revenue growth since its founding in 2002, having impacted more than 50,000 children and grown revenue from $5k to $3 Million. She holds a Ph.D. from the Union Institute & University, MA from Prairie View A & M University of Texas, and BS from Texas Southern University.
Why do you believe STEM Education and Workforce are important to our nation?
STEM education integrates learning and it allows students to experience the relevancy of classroom content and its connection to the real world. In order for STEM education to be impactful in closing the achievement gap, it must be connected to current and future workforce trends. Nationally, ethnic-minorities and females are underrepresented in many STEM industries, which limit their participation in a variety of well-paid, high-growth professions. The underrepresentation of minority groups and women in STEM denies the nation the full benefit of their talents and denies science and engineering the rich diversity of perspectives and inspiration that drive those fields.
What traits do senior leaders need to effectively support and advance STEM today?
Distinguishing characteristics or qualities of effective senior STEM leaders are forward thinking, visionary, passionate, and innovative in respect to design and implementation.
What principles do you, as a leader; apply to your professional and personal life to advance the STEM cause?
As a leader in STEM education, the guiding principles that motivate the work I do professionally and personally to advance STEM education is what I refer to as the “wow and opportunity factor”. It is essential that STEM education is engaging, exciting, innovative, creative, support exploration, and allow for discovery. The “wow and opportunity factor” I employ ensures that the implementation of STEM education programs and curriculum development remain focused on teacher development and student engagement in STEM.
What can we do to assure more women leaders in STEM?
It is essential that current STEM leaders serve as mentors, provide targeted leadership opportunities, and have increased visibility to serve as role models to women.
How is your company innovating to promote STEM?
CSTEM’s targeted efforts for more than ten years is directly impacting STEM teaching and learning and transforming classrooms into innovative places that connect to the real world. Using the CSTEM Challenge competition model, more than 50,000 students and teachers have been impacted. Annually, the competition supports the participation of both teachers and students over the course of 8 months during their academic calendar year. Participating schools are required to partner and collaborate to form Pre K through 12th grade teams.
The STEM content the teachers are trained on supports the implementation of our project-based learning model which is multidisciplinary. CSTEM ensures that the playing field is leveled by providing the same amount of training, support and resources to each of the schools. The cross curricular design integrates the learning experience through communications, science, technology, engineering, mathematics, social studies, and art. Students are provided opportunities to innovate in areas of robotics, geographical information systems (GIS), green (environmental stewardship), creative writing, social media, and visual arts.