The 49ers STEM Leadership Institute, created in partnership with the San Francisco 49ers, Silicon Valley Education Foundation, and the Santa Clara Unified School District, is a six-year program that prepares students with high academic potential to be outstanding. The institute aims to inspire and prepare its students to pursue STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) majors at top-tier universities and become the future leaders in their fields.
The 49ers STEM Leadership Institute, created in partnership with the 49ers, the Silicon Valley Education Foundation and the Santa Clara Unified School District and supported by Chevron, is a six-year program that prepares students with high academic potential to be outstanding. The Institute aims to inspire and prepare its students to pursue STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) majors at top-tier universities and become the future leaders in their fields. The program is offered at no cost (inclusive of class time, materials, and additional academic support resources) and is located at Cabrillo Middle School (grades 7-8) and Santa Clara High School (grades 9-12).
All students who apply and are accepted during their 6th grade year will begin the program in 7th grade. Student cohorts will enroll full-time at Cabrillo Middle School for the 7th and 8th grades and will continue with their cohort at Santa Clara High School for 9th through 12th grades. Transportation assistance available.
What does the program look like?
Rigorous college-preparatory curriculum
All students take enhanced math and science courses together during the school day, building deeper understandings and finding real-world applications in their content classes, with integration between subject areas and the engineering lab. Students are also held accountable for the A-G curriculum required for college entrance.
State-of-the-art engineering lab
As part of the international Fab Foundation network, the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute has two dedicated spaces equipped with resources needed to carry out extensive science, technology, engineering, and math projects. This includes digital fabrication tools (3D-printers, laser cutters, vinyl cutters, ShopBots), robotics kits, laptops and tablets, and other cutting edge technologies.
Extensive additional hours of learning time each year
Students deepen learning through hands-on projects, visits to local companies and laboratories, and preparation for local, state, and national competitions. Students also receive additional tutoring, mentoring, and coaching. These activities take place before or after school every week, two Saturdays a month, and for three weeks each summer. Parents are asked to partner with the Institute to support these activities.
Advanced integrated curriculum
The program’s curriculum includes Common Core State Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and interdisciplinary lessons and projects. It also strongly emphasizes the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute Core Values: collaborative spirit, communication, creativity, curiosity, determination, initiative, leadership, passion, and risk taking.
Enhanced learning opportunities
Students regularly participate in challenges and competitions that include (but are not limited to) FIRST Tech Challenge and Lego League (robotics), San Jose Tech Museum’s Tech Challenge, Maker Faire, ExploraVision, science fair(s), AMC, and Math Olympiad. Extended learning time will be spent in the Chevron STEMZONE and Fab Lab Santa Clara High School to work on non-traditional curriculum such as coding/programming, electricity/circuits, and engineering/design challenges. Learning focuses on “design thinking,” a structured problem-solving process that emphasizes empathy and rapid prototyping while empowering students to tackle real-world problems. Additionally, all students have their own iPad for all six years of the program.
Industry partnerships and opportunities
Students participate in field trips, benefit from specialized speakers and workshops, and have increased access to mentorships and internships.
49ers STEM Leadership Institute is proudly supported by