VCSU’s Wirth named to Prairie Business ‘40 Under 40’ list

November 30, 2016

vcsu-jamie-wirthJamie Wirth, Ph.D., director of the Great Plains STEM Education Center at Valley City State University, has been named to Prairie Business magazine’s 2016 “40 Under 40” list, which recognizes 40 of the top business professionals under the age of 40 in the Dakotas and western Minnesota.

Also an assistant professor of mathematics at VCSU, Wirth is featured as one of the “40 Under 40” honorees in the December issue of Prairie Business magazine. The magazine recognizes young professionals who are making significant impacts in their chosen professions, industries and communities.

Wirth has directed the efforts of VCSU’s Great Plains STEM Education Center (GPSEC) since January 2015. GPSEC offers professional development workshops for teachers and STEM activities for K-12 students and parents, along with curriculum support for STEM educators.

“We’re excited to see Jamie Wirth’s talent and accomplishments recognized on the ‘40 Under 40’ list,” said VCSU President Tisa Mason. “The STEM Education Center’s program makes a huge difference in the education that K-12 students receive, and Jamie’s energy and enthusiasm for his work plays a big role in making that happen. We’re proud and privileged to have Jamie on the VCSU staff.”

Under Wirth’s leadership, GPSEC has secured multiple grants and contracts, including a competitive grant award of $298,288 from the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction through the U.S. Department of Education’s Mathematics and Science Partnership (MSP) program. That grant funded professional development sessions for 36 K-12 teachers in 8 North Dakota school districts: Edgeley, Ellendale, Enderlin, LaMoure, Lidgerwood, Litchville-Marion, Kensal and McClusky. GPSEC also conducted community STEM events, including Family Engineering Night and STEM Design Challenge, at each of the participating schools.

More information about the Great Plains STEM Education Center at VCSU can be found online at

Wirth joined VCSU as a mathematics education instructor in 2008 and served as chair of the VCSU mathematics department from 2011–13. He was promoted to assistant professor in 2014. Wirth taught high school mathematics in Wyndmere, N.D., from 2004–08; he also served as the Wyndmere boys varsity basketball coach for three years. Wirth holds a doctorate in adult and occupational education from North Dakota State University, a master of arts in teaching degree in mathematics education from Minot State University, a bachelor’s degree in mathematics education from Mayville State University, and a bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of North Dakota.

The 2016 Prairie Business “40 Under 40” list can be found online at

[Story by Greg Vanney, Director of Marketing and Communications, Valley City State University]