The OC STEM Initiative’s vision states “All educators and teachers are provided the tools and support to ensure their students are STEM competent and STEM literate.” Through the RISP, we offer quality professional development opportunities for out-of-school time practitioners, providing innovative ideas and logistical support for staff who bring STEM content into their programs. We wanted to do more for our regional afterschool and informal science programs, and thought a STAT – STEM Technical Assistance Team could provide any additional help needed for developing new science, technology, engineering and math lessons and activities. The purpose of STAT is to build competency and capacity internally within agencies, as well as support all members of the RISP. Orange County programs active in the RISP have come together to strengthen their own knowledge and discuss promising STEM Practices. Now, these members will have the STAT team to rely on if they would like to consider taking their STEM program to the next level. The team has met six times since February with the STAT leader CynDee Zandes. The team has been focusing on how to conduct effective STEM observations, provide coaching to staff and supervisors, and establish a cycle of continuous improvement. Contact Suzanne Hill at for more information.