First global coalition for STEM education launched

11 May 2017

By: Sport Industry Group

The future of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education took a step forward with the launch of the Sport and STEM Alliance during Beyond Innovation, a global gathering of leaders at Levi’s Stadium.

The Sport and STEM Alliance was formed by Beyond Sport, 49ers Foundation, Chevron and Verizon.  It is a coalition of like-minded, leading global organsations driving innovation in STEM education through sports. The 49ers, the NHL, Chelsea Football Club Foundation and the NBA have already shown that sport can play a role in getting, and keeping, more young people engaged in STEM subjects.

Beyond Sport came together with the 49ers Foundation and Chevron to host Beyond Innovation, the first-ever event that explored how sports can be leveraged as a tool to improve, empower and create new approaches to STEM education.

Global influencers and decision makers from government, business and sports convened to hear from the likes of Pixar, EverFi, US 2020, Chelsea Football Club Foundation and HP, and were challenged to explore the opportunity for sports to be part of the solution to the very real challenge of preventing the predicted shortfall of 85 million skilled jobs in the global economy by 2020.

The outcomes of the event shaped the mission and objectives of the Sport and STEM Alliance, which will take action on key challenges in STEM education by sharing best practice, commissioning research, and widening the network and stakeholders in sport.

Joanne Pasternack, vice president & executive director, 49ers Foundation commented: “To have the home of the 49ers as the backdrop for Beyond Innovation was special for the 49ers Foundation, which has worked for years to introduce innovative approaches to STEM education through efforts like the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute. The Sport and STEM Alliance will be a force for change as we look for ways to better prepare students for STEM-based careers and the 49ers Foundation is honored to be considered a founding member alongside Beyond Sport, Chevron and Verizon.”

Steve Woodhead, manager, global social investment, Chevron said: “STEM Education is imperative to ensuring today’s students are prepared to be tomorrows innovators. Engaging more students and increasing our collective impact requires partnership across the private and public sectors. Chevron is proud to work with Beyond Sport and all participants of Beyond Innovation to support young people in STEM”.

Nick Keller, founder & president of Beyond Sport commented: “When the 49ers won Beyond Sport’s Team of the Year in 2015, we took a closer look at what more sport could do in STEM through its ability to inspire young minds, to offer a wealth of practical and meaningful applications of the STEM subjects; and its remarkable capacity to engage corporates. Beyond Innovation was the ideal launchpad for the Sport and STEM Alliance, and we’ve already seen commitments from some of the largest businesses in the world to be part of this unique opportunity to leverage sport in the pursuit of engaging, effective and impactful approaches to STEM education.”

The Alliance will meet for the first time in New York City at Beyond Sport United, a two-day event on 26th - 17th July, supported by the major US leagues – MLB, MLS, NBA, NFL, NHL, WNBA – which will draw together sports teams, leagues and brands with global development organisations, grassroot practitioners, social movement and campaigning entities, and international sports governing bodies to explore where sport’s role is in the current socio-political landscape. Click here for ticket details.