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Scott Schultz, Professor of Physics, named Director of the STEM Talent Institute
June 22, 2015

Delta College has appointed Scott Schultz, Professor of Physics, as its Director of the STEM Talent Institute. The new position, funded by the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation of Midland, will be responsible for coordinating the many STEM initiatives currently underway at Delta.

Schultz’s main charge will be to serve as the STEM Network Leader for an initiative being led through the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance (GLBRA). With 38 percent of the region’s gross domestic product driven by two STEM intensive industries – manufacturing at $1.8 billion and healthcare at $1.3 billion – the GLBRA understands the need to strongly focus on strengthening STEM, especially with area youth.

“Delta College has had a strong focus on a variety of STEM careers over the decades,” said Delta’s president, Dr. Jean Goodnow. “We utilize a full and comprehensive approach to education, with faculty working as a team to bring expertise to the STEM initiative.” From skilled trades to multiple health degrees, 128 of Delta’s 150 certificate or degree programs are STEM related.

The STEM Talent Institute will help Delta College focus on strengthening technical skills needed in the economy, with work being driven by employer demand. Delta is uniquely positioned to lead this portion of the region’s efforts. Michigan’s list of the “50 Hottest Careers” includes 34 that are STEM-related and addressed by Delta College program and course offerings.

Under Schultz’s leadership, Delta College has launched and expanded a number of STEM initiatives. The Science Division will be hosting again this fall the Dow Great Lakes Bay Region Science and Engineering Festival for the third year in a row, reaching over 3,000 middle school students each year. The Division also started the Math and Science Manufacturing Experience, designed to offer STEM educators exciting manufacturing externships. And, faculty and staff have conducted both the Science Olympiad and Middle Math Competition for decades to help local students continue their passions in science and math.

Schultz is also the Co-Project Director of the STEM Explorer Project, which has been funded by The Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation. Featuring a 38-foot vehicle designed to deliver STEM lessons to middle- and high-school students, it will help build lessons for teachers for use in the classroom.

“The STEM Explorer Project has been a great opportunity for me to work outside of my own specialty area with a team of other faculty from across campus,” Schultz explained. “I believe the interdisciplinary design of our approach is the unique perspective our community college brings to our region. Delta College is known nationally for its innovation, but now we have the chance to highlight that knowledge in our own community to impact the next generation.”

The Dow Chemical Company is also heavily involved in the regional efforts. “STEM-based careers fuel innovation at Dow and we’re proud to partner with Delta College in its efforts,” said Rob Vallentine, Director of Corporate Citizenship at The Dow Chemical Company. “The students of today represent the future of this country’s economic prosperity, and Dow is committed to supporting the STEM workforce of tomorrow in our communities.”

Scott has been with Delta since 1998 and has served for the past three years as the Chair of the Science Division. Schultz has a Master of Science degree in Physics from North Carolina State University, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics and Secondary Education from Canisius College, and has taken graduate courses in quantum optics and physics education from Texas A&M University, where he also completed the PEPTYC (Physics Enhancement Project for Two Year College) program.

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