Who Can Apply?

Applicant Criteria

The STEM Learning Ecosystems Initiative is inviting communities to apply for this opportunity. All communities, regardless of the stage of their ecosystem development, are required to fully complete the application process to participate in this national initiative.

To be eligible for consideration, the applicant must meet the following criteria:

  • Type of Organization: Applications will be accepted from the following types of organizations: (Please note: Lead applicant should be determined by community-based ecosystem and there shall be only one application per community.)
    • Non-profit organization, with a significant focus on and interest in STEM education, that is exempt (with Section 501(c)(3) designation) or public organization, or
    • Local educational agency (LEAs)
  • Location: Applicants are expected to represent a wide community base, such as a city, region or state. An applicant such as a school within a larger school district, where the ecosystem initiative is limited to that school site only, for example, would not qualify. The intent is for ecosystems to represent communities with a diverse composition of community stakeholders and reach.
  • Cross-Sector Partnerships: Applicants are expected to represent emerging or established collaborative relationships with their cross-sector counterparts and provide clear evidence how their connections support the development of their STEM Learning Ecosystem. Communities must demonstrate established or emerging relationships with multiple partners, including: preK-16 schools; community settings such as after-school and summer programs; institutions of higher education; STEM-expert organizations such as science centers, museums, corporations, intermediary and non-profit organizations or professional associations; businesses; funders; and informal experiences at home and in a variety of environments.
  • STEM Learning Ecosystems Attributes and Strategies: Applicants should review Considerations for Communities:  Lessons from Years 1 & 2 and Elements of a STEM Learning Ecosystem located in the Appendices of the full application.
  • International: Effective 2019, newly admitted STEM Learning Ecosystem sites outside of the United States do not receive airfare to/from the convenings. An additional nominal international administrative fee may be applied to sites outside of the United States.