Meet the Engines Driving K-12 STEAM Pathways

May 23, 2023

​BLOOM Pathways, under the Pathways to Prosperity Workforce Efforts, was created to serve as a comprehensive hub of resources to develop our future workforce. With its mission to engage employers, educators, and community partners in collaborative activities, BLOOM Pathways aims to attract, strengthen, and retain a diverse and skilled workforce.

One sector of the workforce demand lies with the tech industry, which features jobs in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math, or STEAM. YoCo is home to several organizations who host opportunities for STEAM Career Pathways for K-12 students, with programming that encourages students to enter fields such as manufacturing, transportation, engineering, arts, and physical sciences. By working to build the industry’s next generation of leaders, these organizations are empowering our vibrant community and continuing to grow an innovative economy.

B.E.A.S.T. Initiative

LaQuinn Thompson, Founder/CEO | 717.586.0951

The B.E.A.S.T. Initiative is the growing esports/gaming hub for York, PA. They strive to help the youth learn about the ever-growing career opportunities in the esports industry through their mentorship program. With their focuses on competitive gaming, photography/videography, streaming/content creation, and event organizing/planning, they help youth enhance various skills that will mold them into future leaders of the industry. Check out their website to sign up for an upcoming tournament or join their Twitch Stream!

Edgar Fahs Smith STEAM Academy

Heather Myers, Principal | 717.849.1240

This school year, students at Smith STEAM Academy in PreK-8th grades collaborated with community members and business partners to gain real world experience about STEAM Career Pathways including meeting scientists from local colleges; working with Artists in Residency in areas of dance, photography, and historical quilting; collaborating with the City of York’s Department of Public Works Storm Water Drain Coordinator, Lettice Brown; and exploring careers in business through JA Biztown and in manufacturing and robotics through MANTEC’s What’s So Cool About Manufacturing contest.

In addition to those experiences and the opportunities to hone skills in their Makerspace and recently opened Media Arts Lab, PreK-8th students employed the Engineering Design Process during monthly STEAM Challenges. During this school year, students designed, built, and tested catapults, parade floats, grabber arms, parachutes, boats, rockets, and chain reactions in teams to find solutions to the challenges.

Find more information about the Edgar Fahs Smith STEAM Academy and how you can get connected as a parent, community member, or business partner by visiting their website!

Junior Achievement

Lisa Vaughn, Community Development Manager | 717.843.8028

Junior Achievement’s purpose is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy. JA is committed to partnering with schools and community members to serve as a source of inspiration for students, helping them to take an active role in preparing for their futures by exploring careers, developing strong employability skills, and setting goals. One of many JA programs offered is a daylong STEM Summit for 9th or 10th grade students.  Students are encouraged to explore careers in STEM through hands-on science experiments, technology, engineering, math competitions, and trades modules. Visit their website to find upcoming programming and information on how to volunteer!

Keystone Kidspace

Jessica Brubaker, Executive Director | 717.900.9915

By leveraging our community’s legacy of making, Keystone Kidspace provides real access to experiences, tools and mentors that ignite our kids’ imaginations and prepare them for a successful future. At Keystone Kidspace, kids can have fun and make a mess while learning about science, technology, engineering, art and math through interactive exhibits, hands-on activities and unique classes. Find more information about Drop-In hours and upcoming camps, classes, and more on their website!

Martin Library

Mina Edmondson, Library Director | 717.846.5300

As part of their recently completed renovation efforts, Martin Library has expanded several opportunities for teens and children to explore science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Be sure to stop by for these free STEAM programs and sign up for a library card!

For children ages 4 through 12:

  • Fun Fridays – STEAM activities such as robots, art, building, science experiments and more!
  • Mondays – Grab n’ Go Activities, such as crafting your own butterfly magnet to learn about their life cycle, are available while supplies last


  • Tuesdays – Fun With 3D Printing program from 3:30-5:00pm
  • Wednesdays – Solver Space Challenge from 1-3pm


Technology Council of Central PA

Alexis Gosik, President and CEO | 717.340.5624

The Technology Council of Central PA (TCCP) is a non-profit organization that brings together technology-focused businesses, educational institutions, and government agencies to promote innovation, collaboration, and growth in the Central Pennsylvania region. TCCP serves as a platform for networking, education, and advocacy, offering programs, events, and resources to support technology-driven businesses and organizations in the area. By fostering a vibrant technology ecosystem, TCCP aims to drive economic development, create job opportunities, and advance the region’s competitiveness in the global market. Additional information about TCCP’s offerings, including a full schedule of upcoming programs and events can be found on their website!

TechRev York

Jose Santiago, Director of Community Development | 717.968.9563

As part of the YMCA of the Roses’ community work, TechRev York is bridging the digital divide through STEM-centered programs that focus on Youth Development, Workforce Development, and Access to Tech in the York City area. Find more information about their upcoming programs and coworking and rental opportunities on their website!

York County Alliance for Learning

Kevin Appnel, Executive Director | 717.505.0044

The York County Alliance for Learning seeks to connect educators and employers to engage students in career education and development. They encourage students to explore STEAM centered careers by hosting Career Exploration Programs, Career Readiness Education Workshops, Manufacturing Days, and Pre-Apprenticeships for Building Trades, Electrical Industry, and Manufacturing. Find more information about these upcoming programs and much more on their website!

York County School of Technology

York Tech:
Administrative Director: Scott Rogers

Adult & Continuing Education Center:
Director: Kirk D. Schlotzhauer

The York County School of Technology is dedicated to providing high-quality, comprehensive technical education for high school and adult students. Its curriculum emphasizes professional skills while fostering the development of compassionate, lifelong learners who appreciate the unique differences of other individuals and cultures. York County School of Technology offers career-focused technical training in over 25 career programs, such as Nursing, Allied Health, Mechatronics and Industrial Controls, Construction Trades, Automotive Technology, Welding Technology, Culinary Arts, Early Childhood Education, Commercial Truck Driving, and much more.

Additionally, through the Adult & Continuing Education Center, York Tech provides apprenticeship-related training, customized job training, short-term continuing education and training, skill upgrading, industry certification training and testing, and state license training and testing, all while preparing individuals for the workforce needs of business and industry. In short, all students attending the York County School of Technology receive an “education that pays.” For a full list of the school’s programs and information about how to apply, visit their website.

YWCA: Girls who Code

LaQuinn Thompson, Youth Director
320 East Market Street, York PA 17403 | 717.845.2631

The York YWCA is excited to share they will be expanding their Youth Programming to include more STEAM-related activities in their Quantum Opportunities Program which provides one-on-one and group mentoring to students in grades 8-12 who receive free or reduced lunch and live in the City of York. The program focuses on three areas: academic achievement, community service, and personal growth. Stay tuned for the launch of these opportunities and more by visiting their website!



Back Row (L to R): Kirk Schlotzhauer, Director of the Adult & Continuing Education Center at York County School of Technology; Kevin Appnel, Executive Director of the York County Alliance for Learning; LaQuinn Thompson, Youth Director at the YWCA and Founder/CEO of B.E.A.S.T Initiative; Matthew Davis, Creative in Residence at Keystone Kidspace.

Front Row (L to R): Mina Edmondson, Director of Martin Library; Lisa Vaughn, Community Development Manager at Junior Achievement; Heather Myers, Principal of Edgar Fahs Smith STEAM Academy.



By Sully Pinos, Executive Director and Marlena Schugt, Program Manager | BLOOM Business Empowerment Center

About BLOOM Business Empowerment Center

Developed and launched by the York County Economic Alliance (YCEA), the BLOOM Business Empowerment Center’s suite of services provides opportunities for grants, loans, business classes, fellowships, mentorships, education, and more.

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