Lumity has big plans for our seniors this school year!
We’ve been working with this dedicated group of teens throughout their high school years. What’s so special about their senior year experience is that they’ll have the opportunity to participate in our Student Based Enterprise program. Our SBE program matches teams of students with local small businesses. Students get hands-on experience working in direct collaboration with these businesses to solve real-world challenges. Our program is designed to fuel their interest in pursuing careers in the STEM fields.
The SBE program focuses on four specific STEM-related areas of interest: Website and Social Media Integration, Tech Assessments, Cybersecurity, and Data Analysis. Students are grouped into teams of three or four. Then, they’re paired with the local small businesses who will act as their clients. Next, student teams meet with their clients to identify problems or needs within their focus area. For example, student teams on the Data Analysis track will learn to collect, organize, and manage information and use shared file systems to manage data storage infrastructure.
These focus areas were chosen by Lumity’s team with an eye toward identifying industries where demand for talent will be high and earnings potential is strong. Cybersecurity, for example, has been designated as a high-growth field. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for information security analysts is predicted to grow 35 percent by 2031, and the median salary for the position as of 2021 was $102,600.
As they devise solutions for their clients, students receive support from teachers, Lumity staff, and volunteer coaches with subject matter expertise. They also work in collaboration with some of our key partners, including Wix Tomorrow and CYBER.ORG.
Students who choose the Website & Social Media Integration track will learn skills like writing content and building websites using Wix templates. Wix Tomorrow Classroom, part of the leading web creation platform Wix.com, is a free website-building platform, classroom management solution, and curricula for students ages 13+ to nurture their Web Design, Web Creation, and Coding skills.
“This is a program that gives our students deep and engaging opportunities to connect with subject matter experts in the professional world,” explains Michael Hurley, Lumity’s Chief Schools & Strategy Officer. “These partnerships will truly build bridges for our young people while sparking their interest in careers in the STEM fields.”
More on the Partnerships that Fuel the Success of the SBE Program
Lumity works with students in the SBE program in collaboration with several organizations. CS for Success consults with nonprofits like Lumity to create a more equitable, accessible, and inclusive landscape for K-12 computer science education. CS for Success helped connect us with key partners, including CYBER.ORG and Wix Tomorrow Classroom.
CYBER.ORG, formerly the National Integrated Cyber Education Research Center (NICERC), is a cybersecurity workforce development organization that targets K-12 students with cyber career awareness, curricular resources, and teacher professional development. The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) supports CYBER.ORG through a grant from the Cybersecurity Infrastructure and Security Agency (CISA) to develop and distribute cybersecurity education content to educators across the country at no cost. CYBER.ORG is supporting instructor professional development for the SBE program and identifying key supplemental resources that are aligned with entry-level work-based credentials, such as CompTIA’s Security+.
“According to Cyberseek, there are currently more than 650,000 jobs in cybersecurity available across the country,” said Dr. Chuck Gardner, CYBER.ORG’s Senior Advisor for Workforce Development. “The workforce gap is an issue of national security. The solution will not be solved by just one group of individuals. It will take a whole-of-nation approach to secure our homes, communities, businesses, areas of critical infrastructure, and government. We fully expect the current K-12 population to play a role in filling areas of the cybersecurity workforce over the next 10-15 years.”
Wix Tomorrow Classroom is also supporting instructor professional development for the SBE program and identifying key supplemental resources aligned with SBE outcomes for students for the Website and Social Media Integration focus area. Each of the four courses available on Wix Tomorrow Classroom is equipped with a full suite of lesson plans, presentations, and project-based activities for students to bring their ideas to life. In the courses, students learn how to create websites while developing their digital literacy, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills.
“We want our students to be creators — rather than consumers — of digital technologies and to feel equipped to bring their ideas to life with the web,” said Saskia Leggett, Wix Tomorrow Classroom’s Education Lead. “Websites are a powerful tool for creative self-expression, communication, and change-making. We see website creation as a vehicle for students to gain digital literacy and future-ready skills, but more importantly, as a vehicle for them to express their most innovative, impactful, and vibrant ideas so that they can build the futures they want to inhabit.”
Wix Tomorrow Classroom is designed to give educators and students everything they need to dive into the world of web creation, design, and coding to create portfolio websites, capstone projects, passion projects, and everything in between. For more information, please visit https://www.wix.com/tomorrow/classroom.
Introduce students to STEM careers through real-world experiences. Want to get involved with Lumity? We’re actively recruiting for our 2023-2024 Student-Based Enterprise program. If you’re interested in learning more, please contact us!
Lumity is a Chicagoland nonprofit that partners with business, community, and school leaders to develop our next generation of STEM professionals and entrepreneurs. We provide teens and young adults from historically under-resourced communities with transformational STEM experiences that inspire and prepare them to pursue STEM careers.