According to the STEM Education Coalition, the majority of college students and parents believe that preparing students for careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) should be a priority for K–12 schools in the U.S.; however, only half believe it actually is a top priority in schools. Among reasons cited by parents that STEM education should be a priority are to:

  • Ensure the U.S. remains competitive in the global marketplace
  • Produce the next generation of innovators
  • Prepare students to have well-paying and fulfilling careers

For 12 years running, CBIC has organized its annual Tech Tour to prepare our workforce for the challenges of tomorrow. The Tech Tour is designed to inspire students in their STEM studies and to highlight that they can pursue their careers in our region. The CBIC Tech Tour Committee is busy preparing its 2015 Tech Tour to be held on October 8 and invites you to participate in this inspirational undertaking! 

Here's what one of our recent scholarship recipients wrote about her Tech Tour experience: 

Though it is difficult to predict where I will reside in 10 years, if there are available jobs in Charlottesville that fulfill my passions and allow me to apply my job skills and education, there is a distinct possibility that I will be a part of the technology workforce here, continuing Charlottesville’s legacy as a place of innovation and technological advancement.

There are several of ways to get involved in this unique event - host a tour or two at your technology-based business, become a tour guide for the day or make a contribution to support the Tech Tour and its scholarship program.

Tour Host Sites - companies and organizations that can share their tech-related story to inspire the next generation. A tour consists of 10 to 15 middle or high school students and typically lasts for an hour. Last year, we had over 25 new companies and organizations as tour sites! This year, the tours will take place on Thursday, October 8th.

Tour Guides - individuals who will get a behind-the-­scenes tour of 3 local tech companies along with the students and their school chaperone. Your job is to help keep your tour flowing smoothly. As a bonus, you may just get to hang out with the next Megan Smith or Bill Gates! 

Tour Sponsors - the Tech Tour is made possible because of our generous sponsors. Did you know that every year two $2,500 college scholarships are up for grabs to Tech Tour student participants?  

To learn more about the CBIC Tech Tour, check out To learn how you can be part of this year’s Tech Tour, contact CBIC's Tech Tour Chair Kim Wilkens (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Kim Wilkens
Author: Kim WilkensWebsite:
Kim Wilkens is an activist, volunteer, writer, mentor, student and teacher who is passionate about technology, education and social justice. She is the chair of CBIC’s Tech Tour, the founder of Tech-Girls and an enthusiastic supporter of Cville Women in Tech. Kim brings her love for technology and education together as the computer science initiative coordinator at STAB.