30,000 ITEEA Members Together on Milieu to Teach Kids Technological & Engineering Literacy

PostedFriday, November 22, 2019 at 10:35 AM

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iteea1.pngI still remember how proud I was to show my parents the wooden plant stand I had made in grade 8 shop class. I was also pretty thrilled by the kitchen apron I had sewn during home economics. It was the 80's and these were the things people needed to know to be prepared for life in rural Canada.  Most kids are no longer acquiring those particular skills at school, but the need to apply practical knowledge to design solutions and solve problems has only become greater.  Over the past 40 years we've lived through one of the greatest transformations in human history and the global impacts of our digital revolution are only accelerating. Basic technological literacy and problem solving skills have become vital to the future of every child in America.  That's where ITEEA's 30,000 members enter the picture.

The International Technology and Engineering Educators Association is an incredibly effective professional organization for K-12 educators teaching technology, innovation, design and engineering.  ITEEA members teach a curriculum called "technology education" which is problem based learning utilizing STEM principles, often helping other teachers integrate these concepts into maintstream classes.  For example, rather than just teaching measurement in a grade 4 classroom, students work together in small groups to solve a problem that requires the application of measurement. I find this kind of integrative STEM education to be especially exciting because it is so effective. Check out ITEEA's integrative STEM education resource pages and you will become just as enthused as I am about the way ITEEA members are working to prepare all students - not just engineers and technicians!

So what does all of this have to do with directories? Directories are lists of resources, people, organizations, companies, events, and other things stored in a database. Managing thousands of these items in a web content management system over a decade or more isn't practical or cost effective.  When Diamax migrated ITEEA's website and databases to Milieu in 2016, it made it possible for only a dozen staff to engage 30,000 members and maintain one of the biggest collections of cataloged resources, organizations, publications, and events available online.  Milieu also made it possible to turn these resources into a context for collaboration and community to improve them and increase uptake. ITEEA doesn't have a big technology or communications budget so a custom solution or an outsourced digital services team were not an option.  ITEEA needed a solution that would not only increase engagement and impact, but allow them to streamline business processes and expand their reach to more audiences. Milieu KM Exchange (KM = Knowledge Management), checked all the boxes, and Diamax was able to draw on 20 years of experience working on STEM education initiatives to achieve ITEEA's strategic goals.

Shortly after migration, Diamax integrated the ITEEA website with EbD-Buzz an online curriculum as well as ITEAA's Association Management System by Protech, including single sign on and data sharing.  Just last month, in October 2019, Diamax, Protech, and ITEEA finished integrating Milieu with Protech's latest AMS, further improving ITEEA member experience. 

Over the past 3 years, the Diamax team has provided ITEEA the level of service and technology it needed to execute a bold digital transformation, and kids in classrooms across America are benefiting.  Somewhere out there, in my parent's attic is a wooden plant stand that didn't just teach me how to make repairs around the house, it helped me learn to think like an engineer and solve problems.  That's what ITEEA is all about, except they are taking it to a whole different level, and Milieu KM Exchange is helping them get there.