Freya Schemm

Freya Schemm

New Teacher hired as STEM resource teacher!

Marymount University - IASL Student Chapter

"Being a member of the MU-IASL student chapter was a great experience! I got to see first hand how engaged students were during STEM  projects and I knew that I couldn't wait to implement STEM in my own classroom. The whole hiring process went very quickly for me.  My experiences with MU-IASL really helped me stand out during interviews. I talked about my passion for STEM and dreams about how I would integrate it into my curriculum.  I am currently teaching 2nd grade and can't wait to get my students excited for STEM!!!"

Freedom Hill Elementary School

Marymount University students hosted a STEM afternoon at Freedom Hill Elementary School on January 27th, 2018. This was the first event at this location and had a wonderful turnout.

Here are the STEM-NSTA Officers and Leaders with Dr. Rajdev:

Real Resize 2


Here are the volunteers from the event:

Real Resize

Click here to see more photos of the event!

School STEM Certification

 STEM Logo

International Association of STEM Leaders (IASL)


What will School STEM Certification Look Like?

  • A plaque presented to the principal/school leader by the IASL association’s leadership or his/her designee
  • Principal/School leader will automatically be nominated for an International Award for STEM Leadership
  • Nomination of one but not more than three teachers to be part of the international STEM Teaching awards recognition program
  • Nomination of one but not more than three student portfolios demonstrating STEM skills - entered into the International Student Awards Contest
  • Publicity on the IASL website and a press release to the school and local community.

What does School STEM certification require?

  • One-on-one phone interview with the Principal/School leader and accompanying CV
  • A written statement of interest with confirmation of IASL membership fee
  • A self-study addressing the school’s ability to demonstrate mastery of STEM education. The self-study will provide evidence of STEM/PBL education mastery using a variety of fact-finding methods and data analysis including curriculum review, teacher professional development, student projects, community involvement, and publication of such on school website.
  • A phone interview with three to five key teachers with accompanying CVs
  • Submittal of the school’s technology and/or STEM three to five year strategic plan
  • Site visit is conducted by IASL members. Site visit is usually one to three days depending on the size of the school and/or number of students. All transportation and room/board charges are paid for by the school for each site visit team member.
  • Site visit includes:
    • Interview with school/community partners
    • Interview with students
    • Interview with teachers/administrators
    • Interview with parents
    • Review of student portfolios/PBL
    • Professional development training modules/agendas
    • Viewing of STEM program in action (live or online)
    • Evidence of student/teacher/community STEM learning outcomes
    • Evidence that the STEM program is monitored and evaluated at key points by all stakeholders
  • Draft of recommendations and/or areas of improvement to achieve STEM designation is provided on last day of visit by IASL site visit team.
  • Addendum with further evidence to address recommendations and/or areas of improvement can be provided by the school to IASL within 10 days.
  • Final IASL decision for STEM designation and “next steps” communicated to principal/school leader within 30 days of visit.

How long will it take to become STEM certified?

An initial letter of intent by the school to IASL activates the STEM certification process.  A school can self-nominate or be recommended by their industry partners.  Once identified, the principal is contacted to set up the first interview and provide the required CVs. If the school qualifies, then the process for STEM certification begins, provided required membership fees are paid, and the IASL criteria set above is in place with projected progression/completion dates. It is mandatory for the principal or approved designee to participate in all meetings/phone conversations scheduled by IASL. 

What if my school does not meet the quality standards for STEM certification?

Once all the evidence and data is collected and reviewed, the recommendation of the site team for the STEM certification will be sent to the IASL board for final approval.  In the event a school has not met the requirements for STEM certification, a series of written recommendations will be provided and the IASL board will schedule a phone debriefing to discuss the school’s areas of improvement, findings, and recommendations.  No less than six months from the debriefing and decision, a school can re-apply and present new data and evidence to meet the eligibility requirements for STEM certification. Evidence, interviews and a second school site review will be conducted for a separate fee. If the school is not awarded certification in the second round of IASL board review, the principal/school leadership will be able to make a third and final application no less than one year but within three years following the second debriefing and decision by IASL. 

Indicator Levels

  1. Below STEM sufficiency level - approaches sufficient level but generally; criteria not clearly defined or identified
  2. STEM sufficient level - demonstrates target; evidence is provided to support STEM certification requirements
  3. Above STEM sufficient level - mastery; innovative STEM learning experiences for all stakeholders; evidence supports substantial growth in STEM student learning outcomes over time

IASL Membership Fees per year: (membership runs from January 1 to December 31)

Individual membership $30

School membership $250 (for schools of 500 students or less)

School membership $500 (for schools of 501 students or more)

Benefits of Annual Membership include:

Build Relationships: Whether it’s through our many STEM events or leadership opportunities connect with other professionals

Gain Leadership Experience: Get involved and elevate your experience through leadership, planning, and communications. .

Stay Informed: Gain access to timely resources and updates on STEM events.

Share Educational Collateral: Promote the thought leadership of your school or organization by submitting articles to share with members via IASL website.

Grow with us: Be part of this exciting time as we explore additional opportunities for STEM collaboration, networking and education in 2018 and beyond.

If you are interested in learning more about School STEM Certification please contact Dr. Usha Rajdev at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Upcoming Events

STEM Chapter students will conduct STEAM based activities for parents, students and their local community:
  • St Michael's Catholic School (St Mikes) - October 19, 2017 6:00 pm -7:15 pm
  • Freedom Hill Elementary School - January, 27, 2018 10:00 am - 12:00 pm 
  • Fort Belvoir Elementary School - March 7, 2018 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm 
  • Marymount University, Verizon Gym, Main Campus April 14, 2018 10:00 am -12:00 pm 
Contact Dr. Rajdev at urajdev@marymount.edu for further information


First event on Wednesday, October 7, with NASA was a huge success. See pictures below.  Head of NASA Goddard Education, Dr. Gabrys came online to congratulate the students and indicated they will extend this partnership through Marymount University to Stranmillis. This was the engineering and technology aspect of their STEM certification!!

Another event takes place on October 14 with a joint workshop presentation on extreme weather and climate change.