Otter names director of new STEM Action Center

Angela Hemingway, director of assessment and accountability for the State Department of Education, will be the executive director for the Idaho Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Action Center, Gov. Butch Otter announced Tuesday.

The STEM Action Center, part of the governor’s office, is designed to boost interest in STEM careers for students.

The center was created by lawmakers last legislative session as a way to bring together splintered efforts throughout the state and create a unified approach to STEM education.

Business and education groups support the center as a way to focus attention on the need for more students in the pipeline to meet demand for jobs in science, engineering and math fields.

“Angela’s track record of turning innovative ideas for STEM education into reality will help ensure that the STEM Action Center gets off to a great start,” Otter said in a news release. “Her enthusiasm for education, knowledge of STEM programs and experience partnering with industry are an ideal fit for this position.”

Hemingway has taught accelerated and advanced-placement biology, advanced chemistry, and advanced-placement statistics and research in the Boise and Kuna school districts. She has been recognized as the Idaho Biology Teacher of the Year, Kuna School District Educator of the Year and Idaho STEM Teacher of the Year.

At the Department of Education, she oversaw the state’s implementation of the statewide test associated with Common Core.

“Working with industry, government, educators and students, the center will help link Idaho’s pockets of STEM excellence, develop new resources and support high-quality teacher professional development opportunities,” she said. “This work is critical to fostering a STEM-educated workforce to ensure Idaho’s economic prosperity.”