STEM Fleet Forward (STEM-FFI) is a pilot program aimed at increasing the academic achievement and employability of military-related individuals by raising awareness of STEM-related civilian occupations, linking military occupations to academic programs and civilian careers, and addressing barriers to success in the STEM fields.
“This is an outstanding opportunity for military-related students to enter the workforce in high wage, high demand occupations utilizing STEM skills,” said Bruce Brunson, executive director of the CMVE. “STEM-FFI will add to economic growth by providing Hampton Roads employers with military-related workers who have the skills set for STEM occupations.”
STEM-FFI will be an online platform that functions as a dynamic communication and career-readiness resource center. The key focus areas are:
- promoting STEM career pathways through webinars, events, speakers and collaborative programs that promote information sharing, networking and opportunities for military-related individuals in STEM fields;
- awarding college credit for prior military experience;
- enhancing academic support through focused academic advisement for STEM careers, structured math pre-placement preparation and academic financial planning; and
- providing STEM employment support through military-focused soft-skill training, internships, on-the-job training, entrepreneurship training, apprenticeships, mentoring, education fairs and employment opportunities to include campus-based job fairs and electronic employment placement.
TCC offers 10 STEM degree and certificate programs that align with the Office of Naval Research in engineering, information technology and sciences.
STEM-FFI will focus on civil, mechanical and electrical engineering; information technology and cybersecurity; and other STEM-based programs offered by TCC and other Virginia community colleges.
STEM-FFI will provide the Office of Naval Research with a nationally scalable model that can be used to improve the employment readiness of transitioning military to STEM-related civilian careers.