Goals. IISME seeks, through industry-education
partnerships, to transform science and math teaching and
learning, mainly but not solely at the high-school level,
so that teachers can better prepare students to be
lifelong learners, responsible citizens, and productive
employees. It does this by providing teachers with
experiences and tools that will encourage and enable them
to improve their practices and even change their schools.
Principal Activity -- Summer Fellowship Program
(SFP). IISME's principal activity is the Summer
Fellowship Program (SFP) providing mostly high-school but
some K-8 and community college science and math teachers
with paid 8-week summer internships in technology
companies, government agencies, and university
Scope of Summer
Fellowship Program. Since 1985, 512
Fellows from 252 schools have been mentored by 900
researchers and managers from 87 institutions in the San
Francisco Bay Area.
Recruitment and Roles of
Sponsoring Organizations and Mentors. Sponsoring
organizations include high technology, biotechnology,
health-care, and finance organizations as well as a few
universities and government laboratories. IISME has
roughly 20 returning sponsors and 5 to 8 new sponsors a
year. Sponsors commit to a variety of support, not only
financial, to Fellows. Mentors, recruited within these
organizations, commit to supervising the work of their
Fellows and providing support in the creation of their
Teachers. Teacher applications are
recruited widely, then selected competitively by
sponsoring organizations. Teachers must be teaching K-14
fulltime, although most teachers teach in high schools
with a number teach in middle schools. First-time
applicants get priority, although some teachers are
Fellows for as many as 7 years.
Participating Fellows and Mentors. Fellows receive
some training in telecommunication and computer skills
which are seen to be very important; both Fellows and
mentors receive an Orientation Manual and attend a
half-day orientation session.
Fellows work in many ways in many areas, form networks
with other Fellows, and each Fellow develops an Action
Plan to transfer what they learn to their classroom. Some
of the best of these can be viewed on the Web.
Activities. These essential activities throughout the
year include meetings, workshops, an online mail list, a
teacher-generated newsletter, various teacher-initiated
trainings, and the possibility of mini-grants to assist
in the transferring of the summer experience into the
Considerations. The financial implications for
Fellows and sponsors and the costs and income of the
entire program for IISME are detailed.
SWEPTs and the SWEPT
Network. The Summer Fellowship Program was
one of the original models of a Summer Work Experience
Program for Teachers. It is now one of 75 SWEPTs which
constitute the very informal SWEPT Network. IISME plays
several roles in supporting that network.
Impact of SWEPTs.
The data on the impact of SWEPTs, including the IISME
SFP, on teachers is positive but qualitative. Some data
on the impact of a Columbia University SWEPT on students
is both quantitative and startling.
Organizational Information and Contacts. Information
about the history, governance, staff, and contacts for
IISME are given.