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NOVA SySTEMic Solutions receives 2017 Creating Excellence award from Virginia Department of Education

SySTEMic Solutions team
NOVA’s SySTEMic Solutions team, L-R, Dr. Scott Ralls, Dr. Chad Knights, Charles Britt, Beth Downey, Zuzana Steen and Josh Labrie

Northern Virginia Community College’s STEM Outreach Program, SySTEMic Solutions, was awarded the 2017 Virginia Career and Technical Education Creating Excellence Award from the Virginia Department of Education, having been nominated by Fairfax County Public Schools. The recognition event took place in Richmond on Thursday, June 8. NOVA President Scott Ralls accepted the award on behalf of the college, along with SySTEMic Solutions Interim Director Dr. Chad Knights, Program Manager Josh Labrie, Fairfax STEM Coordinator Charles Britt, Beth Downey, CTE Coordinator for FCPS and Zuzana Steen, Academic and Community Relations Manager for Micron and NOVA Board Member. The award noted NOVA’s “exceptional and exemplary contributions in support of Career and Technical Education within Fairfax County Public Schools."


“SySTEMic Solutions views the STEM fields—Science, Technology, Engineering and Math—as pivotal to a growing, thriving economy, in this region and nationally,” said Dr. Scott Ralls. “To help build a pipeline of trained personnel to enter these critical career fields, we have to get them interested at a young age and sustain that interest all the way from school to secondary education to the workforce. SySTEMic Solutions is involved in the innovative and groundbreaking work of engaging students in elementary and middle school and helping them transition into programs in High School and College, giving them a passion to make STEM fields their career."


NOVA has strong STEM ties in FCPS and throughout the region. As the college’s STEM outreach program, SySTEMic Solutions has a designated representative in each region that helps to increase STEM capacity through camps, competitions, expos, STEMinars, Internships and professional development opportunities for teachers. The partnership between SySTEMic Solutions and FCPS focuses on STEM needs in Fairfax, with special attention given to recruiting students from underrepresented groups for the STEM workforce. In addition, NOVA has worked hard to align advance standings for those who serve our country through its veterans’ education benefits.


The program offers a series of activities throughout the year, as well as exciting STEM camps for elementary, middle and high school students, including robotics, rocketry, cybersecurity, tech entrepreneurship, General STEM as well as programming and skills courses and CAD/3D printing courses. For more information on camps, visit http://www.nvcc.edu/systemic/ and click “STEM Camps” on the left side of the page.


NOVA Media Contact: Kathy Thompson | 703.764.0896 | kthompson@nvcc.edu



Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through NOVA Online. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.