Detroit -- Detroit Public Schools (DPS) and Lawrence Technological University (LTU) have established an innovative partnership to enhance education in science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) for students at the Sampson-Webber Leadership Academy. The program is designed to continue through their high school and college careers.
Fifty middle school students will become the first DPS-LTU Blue Devil Scholars at Sampson-Webber, a K-8 public school, and 50 additional students will join every year. These students will continue in the program through 12th grade. They will earn college credits and be eligible to attend LTU with scholarship support.
Lawrence Tech, located in the Detroit suburb of Southfield, is making a $3.5 million scholarship commitment to attract larger numbers of DPS students and prepare them for opportunities in STEAM fields. More than a dozen LTU faculty members will be involved in this partnership with DPS.
Many students who have experienced social-economic barriers arrive at college without the academic preparation required for success in STEAM subjects. The new partnership will form an alliance of stakeholders – DPS, LTU, government, civic leaders and industry – to build a college pathway.
The Blue Devil Scholars program is designed to provide a systematic approach to enhance STEAM education for Sampson-Webber students starting in sixth grade. In the future, the program will expand to grades 3-5, and eventually the process of preparing students for STEAM education will begin in kindergarten.
The partnership will also have a professional development component for teachers, including workshops on project-based learning (PBL) and active-collaborative learning (ACL).
Student preparedness will be assessed in middle school. Modules with STEAM content will be embedded in existing middle school courses, and co-curricular activities will enhance the educational process. Lawrence Tech students proficient in science and math will provide tutoring.
When the Blue Devil Scholars move to high school, they will choose one of five STEAM tracks – art, design, math/science, technology/management or engineering. The students will earn college credits in embedded and dual-enrollment courses taken at LTU and will graduate with a certificate for 12-15 credit hours that will be transferrable to Lawrence Tech.
"We are confident that students who successfully complete the Blue Devil Scholars program will be well prepared to do well in challenging college courses as soon as they arrive on campus as freshmen," LTU President Virinder Moudgil said.
For more information about the Blue Devil Scholars program, go to www.ltu.edu/ltu/blue-devil-scholars.asp