Loading... please wait

Strengthening STEM–Increasing Global Competitiveness

With Patron Programming Sponsor

Brandcenter Logo ExxonMobillogo RedCMYK 1 - Strengthening STEM–Increasing Global Competitiveness

Dr. Bernard Harris, CEO, National Math and Science Initiative
Wendy Kopp, CEO & Co-Founder, Teach for All

STEM education is crucial to solving our next big problems and teachers will play a pivotal role, explained Wendy Kopp, CEO & Co-Founder of Teach for All. Former astronaut Dr. Bernard Harris, CEO of the National Math and Science Initiative, reminisced about how his education led him to a career in space, and said that his new terrestrial mission is to work with administrators and teachers to expound the benefits of STEM education. In particular, Dr. Harris noted that we must reach the students farthest from opportunity if we want to ensure U.S. and global productivity. Reaching teachers is the best investment in the future of these children, helping to connect the dots between theory and the real world.

Kopp asked Dr. Harris how teachers can prepare children for the complex and growing challenges of the world. Dr. Harris noted that with the new Artemis mission, China’s plans, and Elon Musk’s talk about Mars, the new economy will be a space economy that drives the next industrial revolution. Even for those of us who remain on the planet, our lives will be transformed by what comes next. For children, nine out of ten STEM jobs haven’t been invented yet. Education systems need to look at what life will be like, and make sure they have the right curriculum for what’s coming. If we prepare for future and holistic outcomes, students’ sense of agency, connectedness, and empathy will lead to meaningful careers and a better future for us all.

Key takeaways & next steps:

  • STEM remains the future of industry. The best way to prepare the U.S. is to invest in teachers who can prepare students for what’s next.
  • We are entering a space economy that will fundamentally transform our society. As we begin to look offworld, we need to prepare now. 

“Investing in teachers is one of the best investments any country can make.”


Dr. Bernard Harris, CEO, National Math and Science Initiative

“We are working to develop teachers and leaders who can help all kids fulfill their potential to shape a better future for themselves and for all of us.”


Wendy Kopp, CEO & Co-Founder, Teach for All