Global Innovators in the Making

German and American Students in Collaborative STEM Project

The 2022 – 2023 school year was an energetic rise in both MINT-EC and STEM science studies and activities. If current student enthusiasm is a clue, we can expect even more in 2023 – 2024.


The governments of the U.S. and Germany are stressing the urgency of nurturing the next generation of innovators and problem solvers. The GISW and New York State’s North Country Workforce Partnership recently cheered the achievements of student solver teams who participated in the groundbreaking Authentic STEM program at the Forum of Innovation event on June 6th. The core of this program is a cutting-edge career exploration that connects students with businesses to tackle real-world challenges using essential science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) principles. Its focus is providing hands-on, practical experiences that allow students to explore, experiment and learn in a collaborative and creative environment.

Students from the GISW partnered with students in Malone and Poughkeepsie NY, and at the John F. Kennedy School Berlin, Gymnasium Olpe and Gymnasium Höchstadt in Germany, to tackle a challenge presented by ONSEMI, a global leader in semiconductor manufacturing.


The student collaboration produced a concise interview software tool for ONSEMI to evaluate a candidate's basic equipment maintenance skills, including mechanical assembly, hand tool use, electronics, procedure following, problem-solving, data recording, and continuous improvement of methods. ONSEMI has announced that they will implement the students’ finished product in their hiring process.


“It’s really exciting to see how the students are growing in this project, becoming more independent,” said Andreas Haider, Teacher of Mathematics and Physics at GISW, “They see the purpose in what they're doing.”


Two other Authentic STEM projects that achieved solutions are noteworthy: for TMD Friction, a manufacturer of brake pads and for ALSCO, a large service uniforms rental company.


Student enthusiasm for the program is surging, with one student (Amelia F.) stating that “through this project, I am to learn skills such as working in a diverse group in an interactive way … to apply what I learned at school to real problems. In addition, I now know how to systematically solve such problems and can therefore even more imagine a STEM profession in the future.”  Another student reinforced this: “Thanks to the project, no gaps in my knowledge of engineering stand in my way.  I am now ready to start my studies of preference after school.”


As Mr. Haider summarized, “… students are intrinsically motivated, more than what could be achieved in any other school subject. It's a great opportunity for advanced development in the STEM field.”

To learn more about the project please stay posted and check out our school website (link to Authentic STEM)

In a few days we will post a link to a video from the University of Siegen that includes remarks from each of the companies in which our students and their innovative work are described and praised.


Steffi Colopy


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