SME Education Foundation and Edge Factor Join Forces to Offer STEM Experiences to High School Students December 16, 2020 by SME Communications The SME Education Foundation is partnering with content provider Edge Factor to make available STEM and career education materials to new SME PRIME Schools across North America in 2021. The Foundation’s SME PRIME schools’ initiative directly address the manufacturing and engineering talent shortage by partnering with industry to provide modern equipment, tailored curriculum and hands-on training to high schools across the country. SME PRIME students learn about manufacturing and engineering technology and processes through an industry-informed, curriculum tailored to meet the needs of local industry. “This collaboration with Edge Factor opens to incoming SME PRIME school students a creative and accessible library of material,” said Rob Luce, vice president of the SME Education Foundation. “This original content will align with the career pathways developed for each individual school.” Edge Factor, a widely used e-learning platform, has created thousands of videos, interactive activities and lesson plans that focus on career exploration. Its partnerships with schools, companies and organizations tackle workforce development regionally and nationally. Wielding the power of storytelling, Edge Factor media showcases industries and career profiles, teaches soft skills, shows how STEM/STEAM comes alive on-the-job, provides Virtual Workplace Experiences, and promotes training and career opportunities. “In a time when schools are in hybrid or virtual learning environments, there is an extraordinary opportunity to help engage students and communities through these engaging, compelling materials and experiences,” said Larissa Hofman, vice president of Edge Factor. “We are excited and proud to stand with the SME Education Foundation team.” As part of the workforce development partnership, the Foundation will promote Edge Factor-created online experiences in 2021 for organizations to share in classrooms, homes, and at events. Similarly, Edge Factor will spotlight the Foundation’s expansive scholarship opportunities and its Student Summit program, which brings high school students to industry events for hands-on learning, STEM competitions and manufacturer showcases. The online Edge Factor materials enable instructors, students and parents to explore skills, job and education experiences as well as soft skills and career education. There will be no charge to SME PRIME school students for access to the Edge Factor materials.