STEM education can help boost Baltimore's economy, Johns Hopkins president says

Daniels among speakers at STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference

Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels was among the speakers Thursday at the fifth annual U.S. News & World Report STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference in Baltimore.

Image caption: Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels speaks at the fifth annual 'U.S. News & World Report' STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference in Baltimore.

The three-day conference brought together leaders from academia, business, and government to contribute key insights into science, technology, engineering, and mathematics—or STEM—education. The summit focused on solutions and best practices to ensure that the nation's future workforce has the necessary skills and knowledge to thrive in a global economy.

"If you look at where the future innovation is, it comes from STEM-related activities, and universities are the key laboratories for that," Daniels said. "What we're worried about is, are we seeing students from across a number of different strata of society at places like Hopkins?"

Daniels discussed ways colleges and universities can bolster excitement about science and help prepare public school students for the rigors of STEM studies in higher education. He pointed to the recently established partnership between Johns Hopkins and nearby Barclay Elementary School.

"We have essentially made it a demonstration site for how we can, right from the get-go in the lowest grade levels, take a school, put in an engineering lab, and get kids excited [about STEM]," he said.

"We've got to be able to have a significant shift in the way we do science education," Daniels added. "This is a national imperative, and you've got to start early and hope you can create a demand on the part of students and their parents."

A full video of Daniels' talk can be found online.