Workforce Spotlight

Harrisburg University: Relevant STEM Programs for All Learners

November 18, 2020

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology is moving forward to supply relevant training for traditional and nontraditional college students in the workforce world. Our mission is to offer innovative academic and research programs in science and technology that respond to local and global needs.  The institution fosters a diverse community of learners, provides access and support to students who want to pursue a career in science and technology, and supports business creation and economic development.


Founded to address the need of Pennsylvania’s Capital Region for increased educational opportunities in applied science and technology-related fields, the vision of HU is to provide academic programs at undergraduate and graduate levels for diverse learners, using student-centered, technologically advanced and experiential learning designs that emphasize student success, with a sharp focus on specific interdisciplinary competencies and strong linkages to career development.


The desired outcome is the emergence of well-qualified, technical expert graduates whose understanding of applied science and technology-related fields is honed by direct industry experience and rounded by a sound, cross-disciplinary liberal education.


In the mid-1990s, a group of community business leaders recognized the value of integrating STEM education with economic development. HU was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 2001, making it the first independent science and technology-focused, non-profit university to be established in Pennsylvania in more than 100 years. It was chartered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education in 2005 and accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education in 2009.


In further development, HU has invested in education programming to provide enrichment, exploration and other STEM related outreach through our College in the High School, Dual Enrollment, Early College and Enrichment Programs. 


Many of Enrichment Programs are facilitated in conjunction with SCPaWorks, local workforce development board, to enhance the opportunities of youth and young adults in the eight-county region. The programs are focused on a variety of needs for the students. We emphasize STEM careers in our Enrichment Programs and various outreach activities. Our goal is to offer a variety of enrichment opportunities to allow the students to participate in workforce training programs that lead to viable employment in the region.


The trainings consist of STEM Exploration Programs for youth to learn more about the different workforce opportunities in a fun and engaging atmosphere.  For the older youth and young adults, the training consists of Certification Programs that provide a more intense study within a field that interests the student. These will result in industry-recognized certifications and possibly college credit. The areas in which the certification programs are being developed are designed to target the region's workforce needs. The new virtual world allows accessibility to students who otherwise may not have been able to participate.


We are also reaching out to educate via social media. HU and Beyond and HU Flow are two livestream broadcasts to educate local youth in the viability of STEM fields. HU and Beyond will supply valuable information on the STEM careers available from professionals in the area by highlighting their experiences and journey into the STEM career. HU Flow allows younger students a glimpse into the decision-making process of the college students. Current and recently graduated HU students discuss their STEM journey in a candid interview with current and former HU students. They are both offered through the HU Enrichment YouTube Channel.


Summer Video:




Enrichment Website:

Dual Enrollment Website: