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STEM Innovation Award

The STEM Innovation Award is presented in partnership with MESPA and the Science Museum of Minnesota. The new award gives principals the opportunity to share innovative programs and/or projects in their schools. Submitted applications become part of MESPA's STEM Innovation Database, available to MESPA members, helping schools across the state replicate their colleagues’ successes. The Science Museum of Minnesota will provide $300 of programming to the recipient of the award and the recipient will be recognized at MESPA Institute awards banquet – The MESPYs – in February. 

 Any MESPA member can submit a project/program for consideration!

How to Apply: 

Any Active-Level MESPA Member can submit a project/program for consideration for the 2020 STEM Innovation Award. Completed applications are due November 12, 2019. Send completed applications to mespa@mespa.net.

Click here to see full application criteria and guidelines.

In reviewing application, the award committee will look for projects/programs that:

  • Demonstrate impact on school community (solution or outcome oriented)
  • Are replicable
  • Are inclusive and support diversity
  • Are sustainable and/or have potential for growth
See examples of past applications in the STEM Innovation Database.


  • Who can apply for the award? Any Active Level MESPA Member may apply for the STEM Innovation Award.
  • Can my school submit more than one innovative program/project for consideration? No, schools can only submit one innovate program/project per year.
  • What type of STEM Innovations can be submitted? Any sustainable and/or growth-oriented program/project that encourages and celebrates STEM literacy can be submitted for consideration. See past applications in the STEM Innovation Database. Some examples are:
o   New learning opportunities for students
o   Different and innovative STEM teaching methods
o   Different and innovative forms of measuring STEM outcomes
o   STEM professional development and coaching opportunities for educators
o   In-School or Out-of-School STEM experience(s) for students
o   Engaging families or community partners in STEM curriculum

Congratulations to our 2019 STEM Innovation Award Winner: Woodland Elementary School

(St. Paul, MN – December 6, 2018) – Woodland Elementary, located in Eagan, MN and a member of District 196, has been named the winner of the 2019 STEM Innovation Award. Principal Lisa Carlson (pictured, left) and STEM Teacher-Principal Intern David Lostetter applied for the award on behalf of Woodland Elementary.

Woodland Elementary strives to incorporate STEM and technology throughout its programming and make it accessible to all students. Woodland has a Technology and STEM Specialist and has added a Targeted Services, extended day coding club to increase access to STEM experiences, learning, and enrichment for its K-5 students.

Click here to read Woodland Elementary's full press release. 

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