The Fort Meade Alliance is recognized widely as the leader in educational development in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. FMA recognizes the critical need for STEM skilled workforce to support the government agencies and organizations at Fort Meade. The Fort Meade Alliance has bought businesses, government agencies and the overall Fort Meade community together to collaborate and target the future workforce in Maryland, specifically focusing on preparing students for jobs in STEM-related fields and enticing them to stay in the region after graduation.
FMA-created education programs include Project SCOPE, which was created to educate middle and high school students in Maryland about the great opportunities available to them in careers that require security clearances. In 2011, Project SCOPE expanded to provide a thorough understanding of the security clearance process for those who are looking for a job in Maryland — targeting 2- and 4-year college students as well as workers changing or re-entering the workforce.
Another signature FMA program is Tech Mania, which gives area students hands-on experience with technology being built in their own backyard. STEM Family Night, an extension of Tech Mania, is centered around science, technology, engineering and math, also showcases cutting edge technology and hands on demonstrations from local businesses. STEM Family Night was created to engage younger students beginning with elementary school — and their parents — in STEM-inspired career paths.
In addition, the Homeland Security Signature Program at Meade High School has developed into a premiere education program. Industry partners have brought significant resources to the program and have offered students outstanding opportunities in the field of homeland security.
The Fort Meade Alliance also organizes and hosts annual education forums. These education forums bring together the experts in education, business, and the government to address specific skills and workforce gaps with the objective to strengthen our region. In December 2009, the education forum focused on workforce development, STEM education and security clearances. Specifically, the speakers and panels discussed what kind of changes can be made to retain Maryland students after graduation, how to increase interest in STEM-related curriculum, how to integrate business into education to grow a strong workforce for the future, and the awareness gap in our 2 and 4 year college programs regarding security clearances. In Febraury 2011, the education forum focused on cyber secruity. Cyber Security: Key to the Future provided government and industry insight from the front lines of cyber security and identify what needs to be done by educational institutions, workforce development organizations and private industry to win the nation's cyber security fight.
The Fort Meade Alliance produces white papers based on the findings at these forums.