STEM Certified

Where tradition meets innovation


Catholic Central graduates are prepared for careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.

As an advocate of STEM education, Catholic Central created its STEM-designated curriculum to reinforce the integration of faith and reason.

In 2020, Catholic Central became the first high school in Michigan to receive independent STEM certification from the world’s largest education nonprofit, Cognia. Fewer than 200 schools nationwide have earned this title.

Cognia Certified

Cognia’s certification is based on three components:
  1. Learning experiences of students.
  2. Quality and training of staff.
  3. Participation of community and industry partners to ensure real-world integration.

Cognia recognized Catholic Central for its “exemplary and exceptional student focus.”

Learn More

steam designation

As freshmen, students may elect to earn a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) designation on their diplomas.

Students with this designation are recognized for their STEAM coursework and experiences. They also participate in learning experiences that deepen their understanding of the ongoing relationship between the Catholic Church, science, and technology, including:

  • STEAM career series talks
  • Internships at local universities and businesses
  • Job shadow day events
  • STEAM-themed summer camps
  • Field trips to labs, research facilities, and STEM-related businesses
  • Yearly retreats
  • Book study
More Information

Steam FAQ

What is the STEAM Designation?

The STEAM- (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) designated curriculum has been developed to support students interested in exploring careers in related fields. Students who wish to participate in this program will supplement their college preparatory coursework with STEAM-designated classes and experiences. In order to support the ongoing relationship the Church has with science and technology, students will also participate in experiences that explore faith and reason. Students may opt into the program beginning freshman year. Upon successful completion, they will receive a designation on their transcript and recognition during senior year.

What are the benefits of achieving the CC STEAM Designation?

This program is designed to help students further explore the wide variety of opportunities in STEAM-related fields while learning how to continue growing their faith in a reason-centered world. The requirements to complete the program focus on experiential education and successful completion of additional STEAM-related courses which may help students put themselves at a competitive advantage when applying to colleges and universities that offer degrees in STEAM fields and also job searches in STEAM-related fields.

Who can participate in the program?

Students may apply to participate in the program at the beginning of their freshman year. Because many of the requirements must be completed by the middle of their senior year, junior students who wish to apply will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

How much will the STEAM Designation program cost?

There is no cost to enroll in the program; however, depending on the STEAM experiences in which a student chooses to participate (internship, field class, etc.), there may be additional charges.

What is a digital portfolio and who oversees it?

Each student enrolled in the program will be required to maintain a digital portfolio (such as a Google Folder) in order to document STEAM experiences as well as the completion of other requirements. The digital portfolio will be reviewed at the end of each school year and after the first semester of a student’s senior year.

Is there a grade associated with completing the program?

Although students will not receive an official grade upon completion, they will receive recognition for completing the program during senior honors and graduation events.

How does a student apply?

Interested students should contact their guidance counselor or the Director of Innovation to discuss this opportunity and to obtain an application.

Julie VanderMolen | Director of Innovation |

Become a Cougar