Alabama STEM Council to Strengthen STEM Teacher Preparation Across the State Through UTeach

Alabama STEM Council to Strengthen STEM Teacher Preparation Across the State Through UTeach

The Alabama STEM Council will direct an initial $4.5 million legislative appropriation to launch four new UTeach STEM teacher preparation programs at fully accredited public Alabama colleges and universities and to further expand the UABTeach program at the University of Alabama Birmingham. The STEM Council is partnering with the UTeach Institute at The University of Texas at Austin and the Alabama Commission on Higher Education to manage a competitive call for proposal process and provide program implementation support to selected higher education partners. Qualified institutions will be eligible to receive up to $3 million in funding over five years to recruit and prepare secondary STEM teachers.
“Alabama has a decades-long crisis in the shortage of science and math teachers, and I know firsthand how UTeach solves the problem. Alabama can’t wait any more for enough STEM teachers to show up for our students. We need proven strategies that recruit undergraduates to STEM teaching, provide them excellent preparation, and get enough of them out so that every student has a caring, competent, qualified STEM teacher,” said Lee Meadows, Executive Director of the Alabama STEM Council.
The initiative is part of comprehensive efforts in Alabama to improve STEM education. The Alabama STEM Council, formed in 2020, is leading efforts to improve the STEM education pipeline leading to a strong STEM workforce. It has recently launched STEM teacher externships, a Scale Up program for STEM initiatives, and a proficiency dashboard showing STEM student performance in Alabama’s school systems. The Alabama legislature has added this appropriation to their recent support of STEM education through efforts such as the TEAMS Act to increase STEM teacher pay and the Alabama Numeracy Bill to improve K-6 student performance in mathematics.
Representative Danny Garrett, Chair of the Alabama House Ways and Means Education Committee, commented: “Senator Arthur Orr, my counterpart in the Alabama Senate, and I are supportive of an initial five-year commitment to the UTeach program and strategy as a means of addressing the teacher shortage in Alabama. The UTeach program has been successful in other states. Along with other measures recently enacted by the Alabama legislature, including increasing overall teacher salaries, raising pay for math and science teachers, and providing additional classroom support, we are optimistic that expanding UTeach programs across the state will encourage more people to choose teaching as a profession. We are particularly focused on providing quality instruction in the lowest performing and most disadvantaged schools in our state.”
The new programs will be based on UTeach, a renowned university-based STEM teacher preparation program founded at The University of Texas at Austin. Since 2008, the UTeach Institute has partnered with 49 universities in 23 states and the District of Columbia to strengthen university- based preparation of secondary STEM teachers through UTeach, which provides math and science undergraduates with research-based, clinically intensive teacher preparation and continued support in their early teaching careers. The UTeach program is uniquely designed to lower barriers and provide incentives for undergraduate STEM majors to consider teaching as a career. UTeach teachers average longer classroom careers than graduates of other teacher preparation programs, and nearly 70 percent of UTeach graduates teach in Title 1 schools. An independent study found that students of UTeach teachers out-perform their peers in science and math achievement.
“The UTeach Institute is thrilled to have the opportunity to add Alabama colleges and universities to the national network of UTeach programs working together to strengthen STEM teaching and learning in the U.S.,” said Kimberly Hughes, Director of the UTeach Institute. She added that “the current challenges across our educational systems are unprecedented and the need for excellent teachers has never been greater. The students who join UTeach programs in the next couple of years are going to stand out as some of the most purpose-driven teacher leaders out there. They are going to change how students learn math and science. They are going to inspire their students to see themselves as future scientists, mathematicians, engineers, doctors, nurses, and even future teachers themselves.”
About the Alabama STEM Council 
The Alabama STEM Council was formed on September 21, 2020 by Governor Kay Ivey’s Executive Order No. 721. The Council members represent leaders from Alabama businesses, education, and state government. The Council’s work builds on and extends Alabama’s Roadmap to STEM Success by advising on ways to improve STEM education and STEM-related career awareness and workforce pathways.
About the UTeach Institute
The UTeach Institute works to improve secondary STEM teaching and learning through national expansion of the UTeach secondary STEM teacher preparation program to colleges and universities. Over fifteen years, the Institute has employed a comprehensive approach to successful program development in higher education settings and serves as the national hub to a networked community of 49 universities implementing UTeach programs. Learn more at
Media Contacts:
Lee Meadows, Alabama STEM Council,, 205-907-8371
Kimberly Hughes, UTeach Institute,, 512-232-5850
Please direct inquiries about the funding opportunity and request for proposals to:

Scale Up Initiative – Inaugural Recipients

Alabama STEM Council Announces Recipients of Inaugural Scale Up Initiative.

The Alabama STEM Council has announced the recipients of its inaugural “Scale Up” initiative. Although in its first year, this is a signature program of the Alabama STEM Council and will make a huge impact on Alabama’s STEM ecosystem now, and for years to come.

The goal of the Scale Up initiative is to bring top STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) opportunities to learners across Alabama, especially those historically underserved. Recognizing there are exemplary STEM programs across the state, this initiative seeks to identify, mentor and help them expand their capacity to reach more Alabamians with quality STEM education.

The intent is to seed, jumpstart, or expand little-known, exceptional STEM programs proven to inspire and educate students from Pre-K through 12th grade, enabling educational organizations to sustain programs beyond this initiative. Throughout the summer the recipients will participate in mentorship that will allow them to expand their programs throughout Alabama.

The 2022 Scale Up Recipients are:

1. Betabox Skills on Wheels Learning Lab Program by Betabox Learning ($10,000)

2. STREAM Coding Boot Camp by STREAM Innovations, Inc. ($50,000)

3. FIRST LEGO League – Alabama by FIRST in Alabama ($4,500)

4. Go ROVing Alabama by Dauphin Island Sea Lab, Discovery Hall Program ($17,549)

5. Kilby Linking Lions by Kilby Laboratory School ($14,782)

6. STEM Field Trips Program by Huntsville Botanical Garden ($10,000)



Scale-Up Request for Application

Scale-up Image

For the 2022-2023 year, the Alabama STEM Council is seeking program providers for the Alabama STEM Scale-Up Program. If you are providing STEM programming in Alabama and would like to be considered for this initiative, please visit the Scale-Up page on this site. This page will also provide you with all the pertinent information about the Scale-Up program, including links to the application, a rubric of application and program guidelines, and other information.

If you have any questions concerning this program or the application process, please contact Amy Hammett at


Upcoming STEM Council Meeting

The Alabama STEM Council will be meeting on Wednesday, October 20, 2021, from 1 pm – 4 pm to launch its second year of work. This meeting will be conducted as a HYBRID meeting, meaning both in-person and virtual. Due to COVID-19 safe distancing guidelines, we can only allow council members the opportunity to meet in person while other interested participants can meet with us over Zoom. Please see the meeting details below. We look forward to seeing you on the 20th.

In-person Location (Council Members Only):
3500 6th Avenue South (AWTC)
Birmingham, AL 35222

Zoom Access:

Meeting ID: 823 0184 0573
Passcode: 948455
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News Video

STEM Council Meeting Video

The June 30, 2021 meeting featured reports from each council working group with their final recommendations culminating their work since December 2020.  Also included was a report by Lee Meadows, Executive Director, and a glimpse of the Council’s strategic directions led by Neil Lamb, Chair of the Executive Committee.


Next STEM Council Meeting, June 30

The Alabama STEM Council will hold a meeting, virtually, on Wednesday, June 30, 2021, from 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm, to hear progress reports from our Working Groups. This meeting will take place over Zoom. The recording of this meeting will be made available on this website.

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Summer 2021 Externship

Applications are now open for secondary science and math teachers to secure a spot in our Summer 2021 externship program, which starts on July 13-15, 2021.  Completed applications must be submitted by email to info no later than 5pm on Friday, June 11, 2021. 

Selected teachers will be notified within a week of the closing of applications and be placed with three (3) employers in their workforce region for one day each.

Participants will receive a $500 stipend from the STEM Council in return for participation and to defray any travel costs they incur visiting industry sites.


STEM Council Meeting [video added]

[meeting video added] The Alabama STEM Council will hold a meeting, virtually, on Tuesday, March 16, 2021, from 2:00 pm – 4:30 pm, to hear progress reports from our Working Groups. Each group has reached the mid-point of their work, as they move towards a July 1 deadline for submitting their final report. This meeting will take place over Zoom.

Meeting Link

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STEM Council featured on AlabamaWorks Webinar [Updated]

[UPDATE – video included] On February 15, 2021, at 9 am, the Alabama STEM Council will be featured on the AlabamaWorks! Webinar Series. Dr. Neil Lamb and Dr. Lee Meadows will be participating in this seminar, along with others as they discuss the Alabama STEM Council and STEM initiatives for Workforce.

Watch the Webinar

News Video

Video of First Official Alabama STEM Council Meeting

Video of First Official
Alabama STEM Council Meeting

Initial STEM Council Meeting

Watch the video of our first official Alabama STEM Council Meeting, conducted via Zoom, on December 2, 2020. Dr. Lee Meadows and Neil Lamb presided over the meeting.

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