Through the Engineering STEM Identity initiative, approximately 2,300 students in ten rural and urban Maricopa County school districts will be immersed in environments that encourage interest in science, technology, engineering and math, known as the STEM fields. This immersion will encourage students to build their confidence and competence in these areas and boost their persistence in STEM education leading to future STEM careers.


A STEM identity is the self-perception of competence with science, technology, engineering and math formed through experiences and recognition. Student experiences with STEM contribute to how they envision themselves interacting with or within the disciplines. Students need opportunities for recognition tied to their successes in STEM activities like peer-reviewed journals and applying engineering practices to solving problems on their campuses. 


Most students decide before the end of middle school if they are interested in science, technology, engineering or math. Many students’ interest in STEM is hindered by a lack of role models, lack of confidence or the lack of being able to envision themselves in STEM careers, known as an overall lack of STEM identity.

A student’s STEM identity is influenced either positively or negatively by

  • gender expectations

  • social and economic status

  • social perceptions

  • experiences, whether successful or not, in STEM fields

  • an overall perception of STEM professionals as “cool” or “not cool”

Unfortunately, U.S. engineering firms face the risk of a shortage of talented engineers. To remedy this, developing STEM identities in school needs to be a priority in order to develop future leaders in those industries.



The strength of a student’s STEM identity correlates to that student’s persistence in the STEM fields. In other words, if students can picture themselves as scientists or engineers in the future, they are more likely to pursue those careers. If they do not see STEM as a part of their identities, they will likely ignore those college and career options. If students are immersed in a STEM culture explicitly focused on building STEM identities, student success in STEM disciplines will increase.


If you are passionate about working in the STEM field, you can inspire future scientists and engineers by becoming a STEM role model for a Maricopa County school. Being a STEM role model allows students to see someone with a STEM identity more personally and to envision themselves working in STEM areas.

MCESA trains STEM professionals to become classroom STEM role models and matches them with a teacher and classroom to mentor. Classrooms work with your schedule and STEM role models do not even need to drive to the school to connect, thanks to online video technology. Learn more about becoming a STEM Professional Role Model


 Engineering Design Process Poster

Engineering Design Process Poster

STEM Role Models

Helping students envision themselves as STEM professionals.

  Click this booklet to open this PDF with more information on becoming a STEM role model.

Click this booklet to open this PDF with more information on becoming a STEM role model.


• Just meet with students via online video technology twice a month to help with classroom engineering design challenges.
• Engage teachers once per month in discourse about engineering design via online video technology.
• Share what you do and your passion for STEM through your conversations.
• Your volunteered time counts as an in-kind donation. 

How will MCESA help?

• We will provide training for engaging with and supporting students and teachers.
• We will match you up with class- room teachers and students.
• And, we’ll be present via online video technology to help you share your expertise.

Want more information?

• Just give us a call. Contact Gale Beauchamp at 602-372-7295 or
• You will receive information for training dates and specific classroom and teacher assignments.
• Students and teachers will greatly benefit from you as a STEM Professional Role Model.
• Thank you for your support!

Download the STEM Role Model brochure.

As a STEM initiative, the ESI program includes extensive usage of technology. We want to ensure our teachers and district-level IT personnel are well supported, so we have created a directory of technology resources. These resources are accessible in the column to your left and a summary is listed below.


Powered by Cisco and Samsung technology, the Interactive Video Lab (IVL) is a videoconferencing platform that promotes accessibility of resources and increases engagement of rural district participants while establishing a scalable model for bringing STEM role models into classrooms.

A key component of ESI is student STEM identity development via interaction with STEM professionals. By using IVL, ESI facilitates these role model interactions in the most time efficient manner possible, making it possible to connect STEM professionals at work with classrooms --no travel required!

Furthermore, IVL facilitates classroom-to-classroom videoconferencing interactions, allowing students to share accomplishments in which they take pride and ask questions to gain feedback from one another. This is yet another exciting opportunity to enhance STEM identity!

The IVL has been designed to be user-friendly, requiring the use of a single remote to adjust the camera, volume, and microphone. For a quick reference guide of the IVL remote control configuration, click here.


As noted on, "LabQuest 2 is a standalone interface used to collect sensor data with its built-in graphing and analysis application. The large, high-resolution touchscreen makes it easy and intuitive to collect, analyze, and share data from experiments. Its wireless connectivity encourages collaboration and personalized learning. You can also use LabQuest 2 as a computer interface using Logger Pro software for advanced analysis and video features."

Read more about Vernier's science equipment and find a link to training videos. More.


As highlighted on, "GoClass is a learning platform that adapts to the way you teach. Using common mobile devices and an Internet connection, GoClass helps you improve student engagement, classroom management and your effectiveness where it matters most—in the classroom. Only why stop there. With GoClass your students are engaged everywhere they go. With lesson plan review, student notes and media annotation, their classroom experience goes home with them." 

For direct support from the makers of GoClass, please visit:


Many of our district partners are using Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Education tablets. As noted, "the Samsung Galaxy Tab® 4 Education enables students to work better, faster, smarter and discover limitless possibilities on the go… the 10.1" tablet allows teachers and students to connect, communicate and collaborate while securing peace of mind for school administrators.”

For a copy of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 manual, click here.


This section is dedicated to documents created by ESI participants! We hope these resources will assist our teachers and provide inspiration for further innovation in the classroom. We welcome extensive collaboration amongst all of our teachers! If you have a document you would like to add to this section, please send it to your ESI STEM Coach for evaluation. See other resources submitted by ESI teachers here.


Fill out our Engineering STEM Identity Help Form.

Contact the Engineering STEM Identity Project Director, Gale Beauchamp  | 602-372-7295