STEM Distinction Program

Important note: please ensure you completely read and understand the program requirements below before applying to the STEM Distinction Program.

STEM Distinction Program Application

The STEM Distinction program recognizes students who have high achievement in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) while attending Mater Dei.


This program is ideal for students considering a college major or career in a STEM-related field. Students will supplement their college preparatory coursework with an emphasis on STEM-designated classes and experiences. Students will join the program in Freshman or Sophomore year. Students who were already upperclassmen when the program started (classes of 2021 and 2022) will receive special accommodations for applying and completing the requirements for the program (noted below). Upon successful completion of the program requirements, students will receive a special notation on their final Mater Dei High School transcript and be recognized at Senior Awards.


To be eligible for the program, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Complete at least 1 Math and 1 Science class each year with a B or better in each class
  • Calculus or AP Calculus should be completed prior to graduation
  • Maintain a cumulative, unweighted GPA of 3.5 or above
  • Complete 1 approved STEM elective course
    • Robotics & Engineering
    • Intro to Coding
    • Intro to App Development
    • AP Computer Science Principles
    • AP Computer Science A
  • Successfully complete at least 2 Advanced Placement STEM courses with grades of B or better in each course
    • AP STEM courses include: AP Computer Science A, AP Computer Science Principles, AP Biology, AP Chemistry, AP Physics 1, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Statistics
    • Dual Enrollment courses may qualify; approval from the STEM coordinator required
  • Students must attend at least 2 STEM Speaker talks each year, in person or virtually. Speaker schedule will be posted on the STEM website as dates are available.


In addition to these requirements, students must complete four different STEM Experiences by the end of the fall semester of their senior year. At least one experience must be completed by the end of the spring semester of their sophomore year. Students will submit a reflection and other proof of completion as requested. The following are approved experiences:

  • Shadow a scientist, engineer, or someone else in a STEM-related job field
  • Design your own app
  • Design and conduct your own experiment
  • Attend a STEM-related workshop or field trip
  • STEM Internship
  • Summer STEM experience, including the international Science trips
  • Support 2 Robotics competitions (spring semester only, dates will be posted)
  • Active participation on the Robotics Team, CyberPatriot Team, or Math Team
  • Active participation in Pre-Med Club or another STEM Club on campus (letter of participation from moderator required)
  • Take Science Lab Assistant course for 1 year
  • If you are participating in something that you feel would qualify, please contact the STEM coordinator for approval.

  Applications for 2021-2022 School Year will open in November 2021.


Students in the classes of 2021and 2022 will receive the following special accommodations in completing the requirements for the program:

  • Class of 2021:
    • Students may apply in fall 2020 for consideration
    • Students may submit prior experiences for approval (completed before September 2019)
  • Class of 2022:
    • Students may apply in fall 2020 for consideration
    • Students are encouraged to complete their first experience by the end of sophomore year but that will not be required