Osbourn High School Earns Governor’s STEM Academy Designation
July 28, 2017…Osbourn High School (OHS) has been named a Governor’s STEM Academy by the Virginia Board of Education, making it the first in the greater Prince William region and the twenty-third in the state of Virginia. The recognition was given Thursday during a special presentation in Richmond.
The STEM Academy will offer challenging academic and career and technical education programs that integrate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Osbourn will enroll its first cohort in the Academy in fall of 2017. Full implementation is expected by 2020.
“We are excited about the great opportunities the Academy will offer our students,” said Osbourn principal, Joseph Gabalski. “This will be an incredible asset to our Career and Technical Education (CTE) program, giving students even more options when they graduate from high school.”
The preparation for the STEM Academy has been a three-year process that included partnerships with leading industry professionals, non-profit organizations, local businesses, international corporations, government, and postsecondary institutions. “Having the support of our business community has been tremendous,” said Dr. Catherine Magouyrk, Superintendent of Manassas City Public Schools (MCPS). “We are so grateful for the amount of time and energy they gave to this body of work.”
The following partners provided valuable guidance and support to assist Osbourn in earning the distinguished Governor’s STEM Academy designation:
- Able Moving and Storage
- The Anderson Company
- The Aerospace Corporation
- Aurora Flight Sciences
- Aviation Institute of Maintenance
- George Mason University
- Impacto Youth
- Infinite Printing
- Lockheed Martin
- Manassas Regional Airport
- Micron Technology
- Miller Toyota
- Northern Virginia Checker Cab
- Northern Virginia Community College
- Project Mend-a-House
- Prince William Chamber of Commerce
- T.A.C. Ceramic Tile Co.
- Twin Air LLC
Susan McNamara joined the MCPS staff in 2016 to serve as Supervisor of K-12 Career and Technical Education and served as the lead facilitator for the STEM Academy application process. “Based on local needs and regional data, we worked with our advisory committee who selected the appropriate pathways to provide instruction and opportunities for students to graduate with high-demand credentials,” said McNamara. “Our objective is for students to be employed in high-skill, high-wage occupations, enter college with prerequisite skills for rigorous course work, and provide the workforce with qualified employees to fill high-need vacancies.”
Governor’s STEM Academies are designed to expand options for students to acquire literacy in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics while earning industry credentials required for high-demand, high-wage, and high-skill careers. Project-based learning, blended learning, and the use of technology create a rigorous curriculum. Program adaptation in grades 11-12 will incorporate work-based learning opportunities.
Three pathways have been identified which will serve the needs of the local and regional workforce: Engineering and Technology, Network Systems, and Facility and Mobile Equipment Maintenance. All career pathways will provide opportunities for hands-on and experiential learning. Project-based learning will be integrated into real-world experiences such as job shadowing and cooperative learning. This will create a career-focused program that incorporates local businesses and workplaces into student learning.
The STEM Academy will continue to build on and maximize the role of CTE instructional programs and how they assist in student retention, on-time graduation rates, and enrollment in postsecondary education with Northern Virginia Community College, George Mason University, and other institutions of higher learning.
For more information on Governor’s STEM Academies, please visit the Virginia Department of Education’s website at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/career_technical/gov_academies/.
Osbourn is Manassas City Public Schools’ only high school and serves approximately 2,200 students in grades nine through twelve.
Pictured Above Left to Right:
- Mrs. Zuzana Steen, University and Academic Relations Manager, Micron Technology, Inc.
- Ms. Susan McNamara, Supervisor of K-12 Career and Technical Education, MCPS
- Ms. Lolita Hall, Director of Career and Technical Education, VDOE
- Dr. Melissa Saunders, Executive Director of Student Achievement, MCPS
- Dr. Catherine Magouyrk, Superintendent, MCPS
- Dr. Ashley Cramp, Director of Instruction, MCPS
- Mr. Joseph Gabalski, Principal, Osbourn High School
- Mr. Paul Steiner, Career and Technical Education Administrator, Osbourn High School
- Mr. George Wilcox, Associate Director of Career and Technical Education, VDOE
- Ms. Patricia Woodside, Director of Marketing and Outreach, Aurora Flight Sciences