KC STEM Alliance News and Updates

Friday, Sept. 6, 2013


With school back in full swing, KC STEM Alliance is gearing up for a record-breaking 2013-2014 season–more FIRST teams on board, more students engaged in Project Lead The Way (PLTW) courses and more STEM events, around our region and across the nation. 
Number one, or should we say FIRST, please mark your calendar for the upcoming KC FIRST kick off events and workshops listed below–including a forward move in venue and schedule for the Greater KC 2014 Regional FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC).  
Second to none, PLTW – Kansas City is proud to start the school year with our largest number of middle and high school students participating in PLTW’s hands-on STEM courses. Area educators should take particular note of our upcoming Teacher Mentor Days and the KC STEM Alliance sponsored Perry Initiative for Girls highlighted below. 
And how appropriate is it… that third on my list of exciting news to share is our participation in the Triangle Coalition’s 13th Annual National STEM Education conference in Washington, DC. While attending and presenting at the conference, I’ll also be meeting with Missouri and Kansas congressional staff¬–working to do all we can to generate a robust STEM workforce in our region.

Laura Loyacono

FIRST Tech Challenge


FIRST Robotics Competition (ages 14-18
Greater Kansas City Regional 2014 FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC)
Metropolitan Community College – Business and Technology Campus.
March 13-15, 2014 (Week Three)
This change in schedule creates a better fit for teams and spring break schedules. The new venue brings our teams from around the region to a first-rate Business and Technology Campus, wired for innovation and success.
For information and updates visit  
FRC Kick-Off – Saturday, January 4, 2014. Stay tuned for more information.
FIRST TECH Challenge (ages 13-18)
FTC Kick-Off and Game Reveal – Saturday, Sept. 7th
Game rules will be revealed at 2:00 pm (central).
FTC Coaches’ Workshop – Saturday, Sept. 28th, 9 am – 2 pm
(Registration information TBA)
FIRST LEGO League (ages 9-14)
Coaches’ Workshop–Saturday, Sept. 21st, 9 am – 3 pm
Build the know-how you need to get started on the 2013 NATURE’S FURY℠ Challenge. Registration deadline is September 16th. Mark your calendar for tournament dates & locations. Tournament registration begins in early October.
Jr. FIRST LEGO League (ages 6-8)
DISASTER BLASTER℠ Challenge registration and base kit ordering is now open.



Biomedical Sciences Teacher Mentor Day – Friday, October 18
All PLTW Biomedical Sciences teachers, as well as other teachers and administrators interested in learning more about the PLTW Biomedical Sciences Curriculum, are encouraged to attend. Highlights include a panel presentation by area post-secondary biomedical programs and a hands-on workshop by the Perry Initiative, committed to inspiring young women to be leaders in the exciting fields of Orthopedic Surgery and Engineering. You’ll leave the workshop with three distinct activities that you can replicate in your classroom. Registration is required.
Engineering Teacher Mentor Day – Thursday, October 24
All PLTW Engineering teachers, as well as other teachers and administrators interested in learning more about the PLTW Engineering Curriculum, are encouraged to attend. Meet with industry professionals–including PLTW’s own national CEO/President Vince Bertram and representatives from area post secondary engineering programs. Registration is required.

SPOTLIGHT: Perry Initiative Workshop for Girls

KC STEM Alliance is proud to sponsor the Perry Initiative Workshop for Girls on Saturday, October 19, 2013 at the UMKC Dental School. This workshop introduces young women to the world of medicine and engineering with highly interactive, hands-on activities and the opportunity to interface with professionals. Space is limited and preference will be given to 11th and 12th grade applicants with a strong interest in a healthcare or engineering career path. This workshop is free to accepted participants through a grant from KC STEM Alliance. Application deadline is September 20, 2013.

SPOTLIGHT: KC STEM Alliance Director to present at national STEM Education conference in Washington, DC

Joining with grant makers and grant seekers from around the country, KC STEM Alliance Director, Laura Loyacono will share partnership ideas and best practices for identifying mutually beneficial programs while successfully building relationships to grow a more vibrant local, state and national STEM community. To learn more about the 13th Annual STEM Education Conference, September 11-13, visit

FIRST and counting...

Team registration for all three KC FIRST programs is still rolling in. But, with
more than
2,600 students participating,
here's the latest word.

54 FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Teams 
is 6 > last season.

 140 returning FLL Teams
+ 20 new FLL Teams
160 FIRST LEGO League (FLL) Teams in 2013-2014

Mix in a 1/2 dozen
new FTC teams to make a sweet
16 FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) teams this season.   


SCHOOL DISTRICTS participating in PLTW in 2013-2014.

High School ENGINEERING programs.

Middle School ENGINEERING programs.

High School BIO-MEDICAL SCIENCES programs.

Project Lead The Way trained TEACHERS

STUDENTS currently enrolled in a PLTW course in the Kansas City region


For more than 300 students in our region, the crazy days of summer were far from lazy. They participated in one of 15 summer camps directly funded by KC STEM Alliance. 

Currently, KC STEM Alliance is serving nearly
17,000 students.

And like the need for a STEM educated workforce,
that number is on the rise.

Discover the next great exhibit for Science City and win grant money for STEM education in your school. But hurry, the deadline for sign up is September 9, 2013. 

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