IDRA and Alamo STEM Ecosystem Welcome Business and Community Partners to Show Students How STEM is in Action in San Antonio

Showcase Event News Release San Antonio, June 18, 2019 — Fifty San Antonio students will serve as ambassadors to the science and innovation community this next school year. IDRA and the Alamo STEM Ecosystem launched the Chief Science Officers program here and will expand across Texas. The program empowers middle and school high school students to enrich school STEM culture and career awareness by bringing STEM/STEAM*-related opportunities to their schools and local communities.

Following a pilot period during the 2018-19 school year, the 50 Chief Science Officers for 2019-20 will be selected or elected by their peers to serve as liaisons for STEM in their schools and in their communities.

“We’re proud to foster students’ discovery of STEM pathways and make an important global program available to Texas students,” said IDRA President & CEO Celina Moreno. “IDRA’s research shows women and people of color are underrepresented in STEM fields. Our CSO program will amplify voices of underserved students as they advocate STEM in their schools.”

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CSOs will support STEM programming on campuses by helping to plan field trips, host science nights, start STEM-related clubs, initiate student-led civic action projects, and bring speakers from local industries to engage students in conversations about the STEM workforce.

To prepare for the upcoming school year, IDRA is building a circle of support among local business, civic and community organizations. Opportunities include individual STEM mentors, field trip locations, meeting spaces and sponsorships. IDRA will announce the participating schools in September with a particular focus on school, student and economic diversity.

The CSO program was initiated in 2015 by Arizona-based SciTech Institute and brought to San Antonio in 2018 by the Alamo STEM Ecosystem, a member of the International STEM Learning Ecosystem. The program now exists in countries from Kuwait to Mexico. CSOs in Texas will form a statewide “cabinet” to connect with peers across the state, nation and globe.

“The CSO program represents an outstanding opportunity to more formally engage students as advocates for STEM education in our community,” said Dr. Raul “Rudy” A. Reyna, co-lead for the Alamo STEM Ecosystem. “This collaboration would not have happened without the STEM Learning Ecosystems, which brings together communities of practice from around the world.”

With support from the SciTech Institute and the Alamo STEM Ecosystem, IDRA will train CSOs to create action plans tied to their passions, foster students’ meaningful interaction with colleges and community leaders, and enable local industries to connect with students interested in STEM careers.

For more on IDRA’s CSO program, contact Dr. Stephanie Garcia at

Media contact: Christie L. Goodman, APR, IDRA Director of Communications; 210-444-1710

STEM = science, technology, engineering, and mathematics
STEAM = science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics


The Alamo STEM Learning Ecosystem (SLE), a member of the International SLE, acts as a connector and catalyst for STEM opportunities and collaborates with industry partners in schools, science centers, libraries and beyond.

Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA) is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to achieve equal educational opportunity through strong public schools that prepare all students to succeed in college.

SciTech Institute, based in Arizona, is a conduit for collaboration among tech-oriented nonprofits, industry and academia that supports students across the globe to seek STEM-related education and career paths.