LIJ to host visioning event for new STEM center


The Center for Science Teaching and Learning announced that it will sponsor a “visioning” event at Long Island Jewish Hospital in Valley Stream, from 7-9 p.m. on April 30. The session is meant to give residents an opportunity to imagine and share what kind of STEM center they want.

The Valley Stream STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) center is the second of eight planned centers across Long Island that will be funded in part by a $540,000 grant from New York State that the Center for Science Teaching and Learning (CSTL) received in December 2017. The grant was secured as part of Round VII of the Regional Economic Development Council initiative.

National Grid and High Voltage Electronics have also provided support, founder and Director Dr. Ray Ann Havasy said in an earlier conversation with the Herald.

The visioning meetings are intended to give each community an opportunity to determine what kind of center best suits the community’s needs. Participants can weigh in on programs and equipment and help determine what kind of center CSTL will build, and what its focus will be. Each center will be staffed by trained STEM educators whose mission will be to reach out to the community to show the possibilities STEM offers for higher education and careers.

“Young people need to be equipped for the future workplace,” media spokeswoman Allison Gayne said.

Havasy founded CSTL in 2000 to counter what she saw as a decline in science teaching in the U.S. “The United States is lagging behind in science and math in comparison to other nations,” Havasy said in a statement. “We need to take action now to inspire and motivate young people and their parents to STEM education and career paths.

The goal for the center is to offer programs based on the needs of young people and their parents in Valley Stream, Franklin Square, and surrounding communities, Havasy said. “Long Island Jewish Valley Stream Hospital is an ideal location for the center,” she added.

Besides the centers, CSTL has sponsored a number of other programs, including the Spellman HD Clean Tech competition. The theme of this year’s competition is climate change. Friday, April 13, is the last day for submissions. Themes for past competitions have included “Feed the World,” “Clean Water for All” and “Solar Solutions.” Last year’s competition had more than 1,300 entries from 39 countries.

For more information on the visioning session call (516) 764-0045, or visit CSTL on the Web at