2015 NASA EPDC Annual Report
NASA STEM Educator Professional Development Collaborative (EPDC) is a national, diversity-focused professional development system that leverages NASA assets and resources to enhance excellence in STEM education. Funded under the direction of the Minority University Research and Education Program (MUREP) through a $15 million, five-year cooperative agreement between NASA and Texas State University, EPDC provides a multitude of face-to-face and online professional development opportunities and NASA resources for educators in K-12, university and community settings.
Launched in September 2014, EPDC has had a productive year filled with major milestones, including the hiring of EPDC Specialists at each of the 10 NASA Centers, the launch of a new website and a national event registration and management system, and the design and delivery of a wide variety of professional development offerings. Highlights from this first year of operation along with data on the educators served and feedback from stakeholders comprise the contents of this annual report.
A message from the NASA STEM EPDC PI and Program Director
Greetings from the LBJ Institute for STEM Education and Research at Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas!
In 1930, Lyndon Baines Johnson graduated from this institution, then named Southwest Texas State Teachers College, with a bachelor of science degree in history and a permanent teaching certificate in Texas. With a passionate commitment to equal opportunity, LBJ taught in Cotulla, Texas, in schools with a Hispanic majority population.
As the 36th president of the United States, LBJ viewed education for all as a national imperative. He drove the legislature to pass the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, the preschool program Head Start, the pre-college preparation program Upward Bound and the Higher Education Act, which was signed at Texas State University as the first U.S. congressional approval for scholarships to undergraduate students.
The LBJ Institute for STEM Education and Research, like its namesake, seeks to improve social and economic opportunities through excellence in education — with a specific charter to promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education. We are proud to work toward increased equity and consistent improvement in outcomes for all students and educators.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) also is synonymous with expanding our boundaries of knowledge. Its remarkable accomplishments demonstrate America’s enthusiasm for the promotion of knowledge and scientific understanding. Throughout its history, NASA has conducted or funded research that has supported education initiatives and led to numerous improvements to life here on Earth.
As we review the first year of the NASA STEM EPDC, we are proud of our team, the services provided and the research work we have launched. We look forward to further advances in providing Educator Professional Development (EPD) services to STEM educators nationally through our unique partnership with 10 regional NASA Centers. With their support and daily collaboration, we are confident our combined efforts will have a positive impact on future generations.
50th Anniversary – Higher Education Act
The Higher Education Act, signed by Texas State University distinguished alumnus President Lyndon B. Johnson on this campus 50 years ago, opened up possibilities for thousands of lower- and middle-income students who otherwise might never have pursued advanced education.