COLUMBIA COUNTY, GA. (WFXG) - Martinez Elementary is the first school in Columbia County to receive STEM certification. Monday the state school superintendent stopped by to celebrate that designation with hundreds of students, faculty and staff.

Mia Hill, a fourth grader here at Martinez Elementary, wants to be a doctor when she grows up. She’s one of Several students who presented STEM projects in front of the entire school.

Projects like this one help prepare her for that career path. Moments like this matter because they recognize and reinforce students’ hard work.

State School Superintendent Richard Woods visited to personally congratulate everyone on the recent STEM certification. He encourages young females to enter the field because a lot of businesses are looking to hire them.

“The best part about stem is experience for me, they’re fun to learn from and you do a lot to learn from them," said Mia Hill.

Woods said kids’ future jobs will be related to STEM and STEAM training and that STEM training provides a critical building block to set our children up for success.

“So, I think getting this and putting this in place early on provides a good foundation and hopefully it continues into middle school, high school and beyond," said Georgia’s School Superintendent Richard Woods.

On average it takes a school about 5 years to get STEM certified here in Georgia. And the sate superintendent of schools is hopping that other schools will follow suit in STEM and in STEAM.

The state school superintendent also presented Riverside Elementary students, faculty and staff with a banner recognizing the school as a Military Flagship School. They won that award in November 2018.

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