Critical & Creative Design Thinking Program

I AM STEM Symposium

I AM Stem Symposium

The I AM STEM symposium has been postponed to accommodate availability.
The new symposium date is to be announced soon!

Register Now

In Person: $175
Virtual: $125 (Enter PROMO CODE: VIRTUAL to apply virtual participant discount)

This is a friendly conversation/co-learning experience for anyone interested.

Who Should Attend:  Faculty, students, industry leaders, organizational leaders and advocates, people who experience disabilities and/or their allies, and anyone interested in thinking about transformational success

Plan Your Trip

The Critical & Creative Design Thinking Program of the University of South Florida, in collaboration with the Fram Chair in Applied Critical Thinking of Rochester Institute of Technology, is thrilled to announce the inaugural Inclusive Accessibility Movement in STEM (I AM STEM): Transformative Thinking for Action Symposium. This series of gatherings will promote and embed a network aimed at designing, improving, and sharing best practices for Transformative thinking in action for STEM inclusion.  

We are excited to offer a very unique symposium format. Attendees will be engaged in collaborative discussions and design sessions after listening to presentations by academic and industry speakers. For in-person attendees, we invite you to explore the many local attractions to inspire your creativity. The University of South Florida, Sarasota-Manatee is fortunate to be down the street from many wonderful museums, research centers, and beachside diversions. 

We anticipate this symposium to be the first as many. This year’s theme is Sustainability. In future years, themes will evolve to reflect current global challenges.

More details to come as we announce speakers and more! 

Registration Opens 7:30am - 8:00am
Welcome & Overview of the Day 8:00am - 8:30am

Intro: The Mission and Vision of I AM STEM
Lead by Drs. Helene Robinson & Karen Ramlackhan

A brief overview of Ableism and Accessibility and a deep dive into how Critical & Creative Design Thinking and Universal Design Learning can help us create innovative solutions in STEM. 

8:30am - 9:15am

Accessibility Challenges in Early STEM Ecosystems
A panel discussion which explores the challenges faced in early STEM ecosystems, including first year in college, internships, onboarding and early career in STEM industries and how to build reciprocal networks.

9:15am - 10:15am

Fireside Chat Discussions:  Exploring Solutions for Sustainability and Accessibility Impacting Human Health
Attendees will have the opportunity to listen to a conversation with an Industry Leader and a symposium committee faculty member discussing challenges and solutions in accessibility.

10:30am - 11:30am

Roundtable Discussion: Interactive Dialogue between Industry and Academia 
Identify industry needs and explore how early STEM career preparation in academia can address accessibility challenges that STEM professionals will face in internships, onboarding and early career development.

Attendees will have the option to explore the importance of empathy data collection in designing solutions for accessibility.

There will be two STEM tracks to choose from*: 

  • Track 1: Designing Solutions & Infrastructures for[1]  Food: Regenerative Agriculture & Aquaculture to Climate Action, Human Health, Economic Growth, and Gender Equality
  • Track 2:  Designing Solutions and Infrastructures that Connect Responsible Production to Clean Water and/or Energy, Human Health, Economic Growth, and Gender Equality 

* If you or your organization is not involved in the production of goods or services listed above, but you have an interest or are implementing sustainable practices within your organization, track 2 would be a good fit for you.

11:30am - 12:30pm

If you are joining us in person, lunch will be provided.

12:30pm - 1:00pm

Speed Dating Networking Session

1:00pm - 2:00pm

Brainstorming Session: Putting Ideas into Action

Apply the Critical and Creative Design Thinking process (CCDT) or the Applied Critical Thinking process (ACT) to design I AM STEM early ecosystems that will address:

  • Goals from an individual, procedural, and systemic level.
  • Consider stakeholders and what they need to understand and implement the idea.
  • Challenges that may be presented during implementation
2:15pm - 3:15pm

Closing Session
Attendees will present and discuss their action plans.

4:15 - 5:00pm

Attendees can join us in-person, at the University of South Florida, Sarasota-Manatee Campus, or virtually. If you plan to join virtually, we will be hosting facilitated virtual breakout sessions so you can join in on the collaboration and idea generation. Please note: If you plan to join us virtually, from 8:00am to 10:15am, the symposium will be available as a livestream, where you’ll be welcome to ask questions. From 10:30am onward, virtual attendees will collaborate with other virtual attendees is facilitated break out sessions.

I Am Stem Flyer