By Cathy Dew
May 2, 2016 Emeryville, CA Last week California State University's Institute for STEM Education, along with the support of local businesses and venues, sponsored the 2016 STEM Career Awareness Day. The annual event is an opportunity for local businesses and organizations, Cal State University East Bay and local government to support the next generation of Scientists, Technologists, Engineers and Mathematicians from schools in Berkeley, Emeryville, Richmond, Oakland, and Alameda. About 300 students attended the event this year, which was hosted at Aquatic Park Center in West Berkeley.
2Plus2 CEO Cathy Dew along with two of her colleagues, Jasmine Lacebal, a Web Developer and Sally Dew, Creative Director for 2Plus2, were part of the lunch breakout session on Day 2 of the event. Professionals were paired with high-school students for some up-close and personal interaction. Students had the opportunity to practice introductions and then ask business professionals about anything.
The working lunch included an exercise where the students mapped out each professional’s career. Starting at the top of the page with name, current title and employer, the students interviewed each person starting with high-school, through internships, college, jobs, additional schooling, more jobs, physical moves, etc. to finally end up at the current position.
“It was quite an experience since for most of us, we were well into our careers before these STEM-sters were even born (around 2000 for those of you keeping track),” said Sally Dew.
“I really enjoyed the activity they had the students do,” said Jasmine Lacebal. “Mapping the actual timeline for each professional allowed the students to see that you don’t always end up doing what you initially wanted to do. Interests change and it was interesting to show them the twists and turns along the way.”
“I was so impressed with the confidence of the students. They were polite, professional and quite funny. It was a great opportunity to share some of the realities of how many different paths there might be to a job you love, which was one of my main messages” said Cathy Dew, CEO and Information Architect at 2Plus2 Partners. 2Plus2 hires interns during the summer with engagements ranging from two weeks to two months. “It’s a great way to share some our expertise and experience, and also do a little recruiting which is a win-win for the intern and us,” said Dew.
In addition to investing in the future, 2Plus2 incorporates ongoing training and engagement for its staff. Last month front-end developer Bruna Vieira spent the day in San Francisco at a workshop called Smart Responsive Design Patterns and Front-End Techniques, presented by Vitaly Friedman, Editor-In-Chief of Smashing Magazine.
“Definitely an excellent way to learn from other people and acquire new ideas. Needless to say I couldn’t wait to put in practice all I had learned from this day. I not only gained skills, but also a boost in motivation,” said Vieira.
In addition, the conference offered a great networking opportunity. Sharing challenges and solutions, hands-on conferences are enriching and can give attendees an opportunity to connect, compare and share. This type of organic collaboration is incredibly beneficial for everyone involved.
About California State University, East Bay
California State University, East Bay is the San Francisco East Bay Area's high-access public university of choice. CSUEB serves the region with campuses in Hayward and Concord, a professional development center in Oakland, and an innovative online campus. With an enrollment of more than 13,000, the University offers a nationally recognized freshman year experience, award-winning curriculum, personalized instruction, and expert faculty. Students choose from more than 100 professionally focused fields of study for which the University confers bachelor's and master's degrees, as well as an Ed.D. in education. Named a "Best in the West" college, as well as a Best Business School, by the influential Princeton Review, Cal State East Bay is among the region's foremost producers of teachers, business professionals and entrepreneurs, public administrators, health professionals, literary and performing artists, and science and math graduates. http://www.csueastbay.edu
About 2Plus2 section
2Plus2 Partners is a woman-owned and operated California corporation that has been providing custom web development and business application services for clients across a wide range of industries since 1995. 2Plus2 Partners provides strategic analysis, design and development of custom web-applications, CMS websites and Intranets. They are Kentico Gold Partners and have a deep bench in Microsoft SharePoint. The company’s solid reputation and proven track record of success is based on delivering quality products, on time and within budget, and building long-term relationships. https://www.2plus2.com