frequently asked questions
QUESTION: What is STEM?
ANSWER: It is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
QUESTION: What is STEAM?
ANSWER: A relatively new acronym used by teachers, policy makers, youth service organizations, and others meaning Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math.
QUESTION: What is the difference between the Fine Arts and the Performing Arts?
ANSWER: The Fine Arts are visual. They include film/cinema, sculpture and the visual arts like drawing, painting and photography. The Performing Arts have to do with performance and include dance, choral music (singing), instrumental music, and the theatre.
QUESTION: Why combine STEM and the Arts to make STEAM?
ANSWER: Because studies recognize the power science and the fine and performing arts have when they are combined. STEAM does not mean that the Arts lessen the importance of science; the relationship between the two is reciprocal. They enhance each other. Students exposed to the arts and the sciences together tend to do better in the classroom, on standardized tests, are less likely to have interaction with law enforcement, and are more likely to graduate from high school and go on to college. Click here for Facts & Stats.
QUESTION: What is The E.S.T.E.A.M. Initiative?
ANSWER: Founded in February 2014 by then 17-year-old Malerie Gamblin, The E.S.T.E.A.M. Initiative is an organization created to spread awareness of the power that STEM+the Arts have when they are combined. In fact, the acronym E.S.T.E.A.M. stands for Empowerment through Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM). The organization's motto is "Changing Lives through the Arts & Sciences... One Kid at a Time."
QUESTION: How does E.S.T.E.A.M. run?
ANSWER: Most of what the organization does is done for free and by its founder and executive director, Malerie Gamblin. She is assisted by the E.S.T.E.A.M. Advisory Board and by a group of active volunteers called the STEAM Team.
QUESTION: How is E.S.T.E.A.M. funded?
ANSWER: For things that require money, like the E.S.T.E.A.M. Backpack Program, Malerie uses money she has earned, which is sometimes supplemented by her family. An annual tennis benefit (first event to be in Fall 2014) will raise money for E.S.T.E.A.M.'s scholarship fund. In the future, it is hoped that individual donors and businesses will make monetary contributions.
QUESTION: Why is literacy so important to the STEAM effort?
ANSWER: Because reading and writing are at the foundation of every children's education. They are essential to the study of STEAM and to life success.
QUESTION: Why is mentorship so important to the STEAM effort?
ANSWER: Because research has shown that students who are not only exposed to STEAM but who also have a mentor (especially one who looks like them) are more likely to enter a STEAM career field.