STEM

Biogen Foundation Selects Grantees to Receive $10 Million Investment for STEM Education

 Biogen Foundation Selects Grantees to Receive $10 Million Investment for STEM Education

The Biogen Foundation today announced the six nonprofits that will share a previously-announced four-year, $10 million grant to drive the development of local STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education ecosystems in Cambridge and Somerville.

Project Exploration Wins 2018 STEM Coalition Challenge

Project Exploration Wins 2018 STEM Coalition Challenge

Project Exploration was selected from 92 applications from 82 communities across 35 states, representing more than 1,800 nonprofits, companies, school districts, and local government partners. Project Exploration (PE) is honored to have been selected as a finalist in the US2020 Challenge. As a finalist, Project Exploration sent representatives, Natasha Smith-Walker and Kelsey Galante, to attend the US2020 Collaboratory in Pittsburgh in February 2018.

Pratt Institute Named a Finalist in US2020 STEM Coalition Challenge

Pratt Institute Named a Finalist in US2020 STEM Coalition Challenge

Pratt Institute has been selected as one of 15 finalists for the US2020 STEM Coalition Challenge, a competition for communities across the United States to develop cross-sector partnerships and bridge the opportunity gap by bringing hands-on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) mentoring and maker-centered learning to underrepresented youth. Eight winners, to be selected in spring 2018, will receive two years of financial, consulting, and staff support in order to implement the initiative.

Front Porch: Idaho STEM Action Center heading to STEM Coalition Challenge

Front Porch: Idaho STEM Action Center heading to STEM Coalition Challenge

US2020, part of the national nonprofit Citizen Schools that focuses on building up America’s STEM programs, has announced that the Idaho STEM Action Center is one of the 15 finalists for its STEM Coalition Challenge. The STEM Action Center was chosen through an application process, where it was evaluated based on its “potential for impact, approach to partnership building, creative engagement strategies and sustainability planning,” according to a press release.

U.S. Department of Education awards $3.9M to expand BoSTEM, a citywide initiative to increase STEM programming

U.S. Department of Education awards $3.9M to expand BoSTEM, a citywide initiative to increase STEM programming

Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh and Boston Public Schools (BPS) Superintendent Tommy Chang today joined leaders of United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, Boston After School & Beyond and community-based organizations to announce a significant expansion of BoSTEM, a city-wide initiative aimed at increasing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) after-school programming for up to 10,000 students in grades 6-8 who are typically underrepresented in STEM learning and careers.

Dell Youth Learning Support Aims to Unlock Student Potential

Dell Youth Learning Support Aims to Unlock Student Potential

Mariana is currently fifteen years old. As many other students around her age, she enjoys playing with her little sister and learning new subjects. Mariana’s family moved to the United States from El Salvador in 2016 on a quest for enhanced opportunities. “We left so I could have additional chances to work and study,” she says. It has been arduous to move here because I miss my aunts who are still in El Salvador”.

Dell EMC Supports Boston After-School STEM Program

Dell EMC Supports Boston After-School STEM Program

Big tech companies like Google have stepped up in recent years to help nonprofits and organizations provide underserved students with access to education infused with technology.

After-school science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs have seen success, so it’s a no-brainer that a tech giant like Dell EMC would put its support behind one.

Late last year, it was announced that Dell EMC would provide the nonprofit Citizen Schools with $100,000 to directly support hands-on STEM programs in Massachusetts.

Citizen Schools First Recipient of Funding from New Organization Life Science Cares

Citizen Schools First Recipient of Funding from New Organization Life Science Cares

Boston, MA - Life Science Cares, a new organization that unites the human and financial resources of the life sciences sector in the fight to end poverty in Greater Boston, has selected Citizen Schools as one of its first recipients of a donation to a nonprofit organization. Citizen Schools is a national organization, based in Boston, which partners with middle schools in six states to provide educational enrichment through Expanded Learning Time (ELT) programs held during after school hours.

Parents Bullish on Ed Tech, Skeptical About Its Implementation, Survey Says

Parents overwhelmingly want their children's school to use more technology, and they believe that devices and digital resources can contribute to a more personalized educational experience. But just 1 in 3 parents think schools are currently doing a good job using ed tech to tailor student learning.

Those are the top-level findings from a new national survey of 1,000 parents, released today by The Learning Assembly, a network funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that includes seven nonprofit educational organizations from around the country. (The philanthropy provides support for Education Week's coverage of personalized learning.)

"Parents don't see technology as a silver bullet," said Phyllis Lockett, the CEO of LEAP Innovations, a Learning Assembly member organization that works with Chicago schools, in a statement.

"But the data suggests that they do see a link between smart implementation of technology and the kind of tailored, personalized education that they want and expect for their children," Lockett said.

The findings are the latest in the ongoing discussion of parents' attitudes and practices when it comes to educational technology. In recent months, for example, the advocacy group Parents Across America has released a series of resources detailing what it describes as the "threats" posed by education technology, while the Pew Research Center released an analysis of adults' "digital readiness."

Some of the most interesting findings from the new Learning Assembly survey aren't directly related to technology. For example: Just 22 percent of parents said they communicated with their child's teacher about academic progress or performance at least once a week, and such communications still happen most frequently in person, the survey found.

Parents also reported being less passionate about personalized learning (defined in the survey as "making sure that students have learning experiences that are tailored to students' individual needs and strengths") than about schools providing access to high-quality teachers, teaching subjects that will prepare children for the future, and robust parent involvement.

Among the other highlights from the new survey:

  • Parents see a growing role for ed tech: 66 percent say use of technology in their child's school has increased in recent years.
  • 93 percent of parents surveyed said they "believe in the use of technology to tailor student learning."
  • Just 1 in 3 parents reported believing that schools are currently doing an excellent job using technology for this purpose.
  • Only 35 percent of parents whose children use devices in school say their children have learned more because of technology.
  • Parents reported a lack of confidence that they understand such terms as "personalized learning" (44 percent said they were confident they understood the term), "competency-based education" (43 percent), "21st century skills" (31 percent), "data-driven instruction" (27 percent), and "differentiated instruction" (21 percent).
  • Parents generally described their child's schools as "good" or "excellent" on various aspects related to personalization, such as "using technology to tailor your child's learning experiences" (74 percent) and "understanding your child's individual needs, strengths, and interests" (71 percent).
  • Parents were somewhat less positive about the extent to which schools are using technology to give their child more choice—over both "how he/she demonstrates what he/she has learned" (66 percent) and "how he/she wants to learn (56 percent).

The poll was conducted by YouGuv between September 9 and 16.

Learning Assembly members include Citizen Schools, Digital Promise, Highlander Institute, iZone, LearnLaunch, LEAP Innovations, and the Silicon Valley Education Foundation. All told, those groups partnered with 101 schools serving 13,400 students, according to the network's release.

NVBOTS & Citizen Schools Partnership Continues as Joseph A. Browne School Welcomes NVPro 3D Printer

I first took notice of NVBOTS and their lineup of 3D printers a couple of years ago as they entered the educational arena, ready to offer accessibility to students everywhere, beginning with their donation of an NVPro toCitizen Schools, a nonprofit organization. Since, NVBOTS has gone on to receive significant seed funding andSeries A financing, offer a 3D printing workshop for Scouts, as well as taking on commercial metal 3D printing. As their momentum keeps rolling, they’re staying focused on keeping current relationships strong too, and that includes Citizen Schools, as NVBOTS announces they will be expanding the 3D printing program partnership.

With 3D printers already in several other schools, now the NVBOTS NVPro will be finding a home at theJoseph A. Browne School which educates students from grades five through eight in Chelsea, MA. This will serve as a further extension in the partnership between the 3D printer manufacturer and the nonprofit organization as they continue an ongoing relationship in promoting 3D technology which began in 2013. Their goal together has been to give underprivileged students exposure to 3D printing and accompanying curricula and also to give them a chance to participate in the Citizen School Apprenticeship program, where they can learn hands-on.

“NVBOTS has always been passionate about inspiring students to turn their dreams into realities through 3D Printing,” said Chris Haid, NVBOTS director of operations and product management. “Our partnership with Citizen Schools is one grounded in inspiring students to learn through hands-on, experiential learning that teaches them to think differently – with confidence – and apply that way of thinking to other aspects of their life. We are proud of our growing partnership with Citizen Schools, as we give students the opportunity to innovate in ways they never imagined.”

citizen-schools-logoThroughout the years, NVBOTS has been able to create a classroom experience for students that ingrains STEM learning as they learn about design and engineering in a hands-on environment, creating products that actually make a difference. Their NVLibrary lesson plans offer introductory modules, including one that teaches students how to make 3D printed prosthetics. Their curriculum has even been used for students as young as the fourth-grade level, allowing them to learn about the technology and truly apply it to realistic issues we face in the world today.

NVBOTS has been recognized as a Top 10 Most Innovative Company in Education by Fast Company for their efforts. Students are given greater confidence as they learn new skills, as well as discovering strong new interests in the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics) subject areas—and seeing how challenging and fun the projects can be. Through working with NVBOTS, students truly are improving in their work, with student efficacy rates increasing, and deviation in classroom scores shrinking. In surveys given to students by the Citizen Schools organization, they noted that they had much more confidence in problem solving and felt better about their skill sets.nvpro

“NVBOTS has been a partner genuinely making a difference since day one,” said Megan Bird, executive director of Citizen Schools Massachusetts. “Not only have they donated 3D printers, curriculum and their time on a regular basis, they are inspiring our students to learn about technology, teamwork and leadership in a way that will stay with them throughout their life. This is why NVBOTS team members are consistently awarded the President’s Volunteer Service Award and other accolades.”

The NVPro, while user-friendly and allowing students and teachers to print jobs from anywhere at anytime, is also the first end-to-end 3D printing system that features automated part removal—a huge benefit as it saves so much time and hassle, and also means there is no need for an onsite operator. Meant for the educational system, the NVPro offers reliability, accessibility, and simplicity in use for schools. Find out morehere about the ongoing work between NVBOTS and Citizen Schools, as well as reading the accompanying case study. You can also follow NVBOTS on Twitter @NVBOTS as well as at LinkedIn.

Citizen Schools STEM Programs Get A Boost From Dell EMC

BOSTON-- Oct. 3, 2016 - Citizen Schools is pleased to announce it has received a $100,000 gift from Dell EMC. The gift affirms Dell EMC’s continuing commitment to Citizen Schools following its historic merger, building upon EMC’s long-time support of Citizen Schools.  Citizen Schools is a national non-profit focused on enriching the education of middle school students in six states through Expanded Learning Time (ELT) programs held during after school hours. “We are grateful for this generous donation from Dell EMC to support our STEM programs for over 1,500 students in Boston and Chelsea,” said Megan Bird, Executive Director of Citizen Schools Massachusetts. “As one of our deepest partners, we greatly value the support from EMC over the last six years, and look forward to continuing this relationship with Dell EMC.”

“Dell EMC is committed to closing the learning gap and giving young people access to the technology and skills they need to thrive in a connected world,” said David Goulden, President, Dell EMC. “We’re incredibly pleased to build upon our long relationship with Citizen Schools, and applaud the great work they do through their Expanded Learning Time programs for the communities in which they serve.”

This gift will directly support Citizen Schools hands-on STEM programming at sites in Massachusetts, for the 2016-2017 school year. Students who participate in STEM apprenticeships with Citizen Schools report 80% interest in pursuing a STEM career compared to 33% nationwide.  Since 2008, EMC has contributed more than $1.4 million to Citizen Schools programming in Massachusetts, North Carolina and California. In that time, EMC employees have taught over 55 semester-long apprenticeships in science and technology fields including engineering, aviation, internet security, web design, robotics and entrepreneurship.

 

Media Contact:

Darcie Fisher

darcie@ellisstrategies.com  | 774-281-3506

 

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit http://www.citizenschools.org/

Congratulations to MacCalvin Romain, our "Science Super Hero"

The Science Channel is crowning “Science Super Heroes” this month in celebration of 20 years on the air. We’re proud to announce that Citizen Schools alum MacCalvin Romain is one of those heroes. MacCalvin learned how to build a computer as a sixth-grader in a Citizen Schools apprenticeship in Boston, MA. His interest in computer technology was piqued. Although MacCalvin has now graduated from college and is enrolled in a Masters program, he has remained connected to Citizen Schools throughout his professional journey. In an interview on ABC5 Boston, MacCalvin explained why he returned to the program. “It was great to be able to come back, to come full circle and reach out to some of these kids,” he says.

His first experiment with engineering was successful. MacCalvin says he was known as “the kid with the hair dryer” for a while, after his attempt to turn a hair dryer into a flashlight succeeded. While it may seem like an unusual beginning for a technologist, it’s these types of small victories in experimentation that inspire students and launch careers.

MacCalvin Romain

MacCalvin says his time as a Citizen Schools student showed him the potential his personal experiments and everyday classes held. “It wasn’t until 6th grade that i started to understand where these math and science courses could take you in the future,” says MacCalvin.

After graduating from Boston College, MacCalvin went to work for EMC, “a dream come true” for a local Boston kid, he says. While working at EMC, MacCalvin volunteered with Citizen Schools, teaching an apprenticeship to kids from neighborhoods like his. He has taught over 200 students from Boston and Chelsea.

“EMC gave me that platform, for the kids to see someone who grew up in some of the areas that they are from, to see, “Hey, he’s working at EMC, he’s working in the technology space, I can relate to that,” MacCalvin says. “So for me it was an opportunity for these kids to have a role model or an influence.”

MacCalvin was instrumental in a mentoring partnership between DigitasLBI and Citizen Schools campuses in Boston. McCalvin worked as a senior marketing analyst at Digitas, and galvanized his coworkers into volunteering.

As for why he continues to teach, even as his career takes off, McCalvin offered a simple reason. “I want to give kids the opportunity to really experience the computer building, experience the technology, and when they sign up for the class, hopefully one of these kids will be able to say “this is something that I can see myself doing,” he says.

People have noticed the impact MacCalvin has on the kids he works with. One of MacCalvin’s students, Toni-Chanelle, earned a spot at the White House Science Fair for a video game she built in MacCalvin’s coding class. Last year, he was honored with a Presidential Volunteer Service Award. And now, MacCalvin is being nationally recognized as a Science Super Hero. Here at Citizen Schools, we couldn’t think of a more fitting title. Congratulations, MacCalvin, we can’t wait to see what you do next!

 

To learn more about the Science Channel's Science Super Heroes, click here.

Mack and Moxy, The Kids’ TV Show About Causes, Premieres on Netflix Streaming October 1

Los Angeles, California, September 28, 2016:  Mack & Moxy, a new kids’ TV series produced by Socially Dynamic Entertainment in association with Bardel Entertainment and 12 national charities, will begin streaming on Netflix October 1st. Mack & Moxy features Mack, a lovable moose-like lummox, and Moxy, a feisty whirlwind of a raccoon/fox-inspired go-getter, who find engaging ways to help younger kids (ages 3 – 7) become more empathetic and learn about important issues such as Autism inclusion, literacy, hunger, wildlife preservation, emergency preparedness, STEM Education, the power of play, National Parks and the great outdoors, seat belt safety, physical fitness, eating healthy and more. These important issues are explored with a combination of animation, live-action and engaging music in relatable 14-minute episodes in which Mack and Moxy, together with a helpful Trooper, set out to rescue another Great Helpee in a far-off mystical place called HelpeeLand.

The series emphasizes the concept of empathy, celebrates the joy of helping others and teaches kids life-long lessons of charity and compassion. The series has been rolling out on PBS stations this year, with a 300% increase in airings between August and September thanks to the producers securing high-profile stations including KLCS in Los Angeles and WETA in Washington D.C. Now, to add to the momentum and just in time for National Bullying Prevention Month in October, Mack & Moxy will be available to families everywhere streaming on Netflix beginning October 1st.

Series creator Brahm Wenger has an extensive record of developing quality kid’s entertainment with Disney and Air Bud Entertainment.  Wenger and his partner Alan Green (who co-authored the award-winning “Dewey Doo-It” book series together) set out to create a children’s series that would be like nothing else on the air.  “Kids can be inundated with media and news that can seem very troubling and this can be scary and confusing for the younger citizens of our community. That’s why we wanted to give kids a ray of hope. Mack & Moxy shows them that, no matter how young they are, they can begin to make a difference by looking outside themselves to a shy classmate who might just need a friend or by volunteering with their parents at a local food bank or library.”

 

Through their passion for this project, Wenger and Green were able to enlist a remarkable line-up of high-profile charity partners and celebrity guests who are enthusiastic about working together to make Mack & Moxy a truly authentic (but fun!) learning experience. Each segment is developed with a charity partner who lends their expertise to crafting the subject matter in a way that is accessible to younger children. Celebrity guests, thrilled to be involved with this project, make cameo appearances in each episode to help Mack & Moxy on their adventures.  Celebrities for Season 1 include Keegan-Michael Key, Josh Duhamel, Kal Penn, Dean Norris, Eva LaRue, Rachael Ray, Matt Lucas, Melissa Fumero and Hank Azaria (who voices “Shelfish Sheldon,” Mack and Moxy’s nemesis).

 

Twelve of America’s leading nonprofits and government organizations partnered with Mack & Moxy for season one: American Heart Association; American Red Cross; Citizen Schools; Easterseals; Feeding America; Safe Kids Worldwide; National Park Foundation; Orange County Sheriff’s Department; Playworks; President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition; Save the Children and World Wildlife Fund.

Mack & Moxy‘s major underwriters for season one include: SanDisk, IKEA, Elizabeth Pang Fullerton, the Deeann and Al Baldwin Foundation, ConAgra Foods, Graco Children’s Products, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, QVC and True Drinks. Additional funding is provided by Pacific Gas & Electric Company, San Diego Gas & Electric, Edison International, the Bernard P. Novak Foundation, and Mendability.

Mack & Moxy is produced by Socially Dynamic Entertainment in association with Vancouver, Canada-based animation studio Bardel Entertainment (Jake and the Neverland Pirates; Puss in Boots; Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles).

Learn more about Mack & Moxy

 

Social Media

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Snapchat 

@mackandmoxy 

#mackandmoxy 

 

Mack & Moxy Press Contacts:

Donna Hardwick, On and On PR

Ph: 617.308.5677

E: dhardwick@onandonpr.com

 

White House Tips Hat to Philly School Collaborative STEM Efforts

A Philadelphia high school with a focus on agricultural sciences has just been recognized alongside two benefactors for undertaking an innovative approach to STEM. The W.B. Saul High School recently accepted the US2020 STEM Mentoring Award in the category of "excellence in public-private partnerships," during a STEM Mentoring Symposium at the White House. The high school won along with its collaborators, The Nature Conservancy and the CH2M Foundation.

Recipients from W.B. Saul High School in Philadelphia, the CH2M Foundation and The Nature Conservancy show their award for a public-private partnership to teach STEM to high schoolers. Source: CH2M.Recipients from W.B. Saul High School in Philadelphia, the CH2M Foundation and The Nature Conservancy show their award for a public-private partnership to teach STEM to high schoolers. Source: CH2M.

At the end of last year the foundation had awarded a $200,000 grant to the Conservancy to develop a green infrastructure and a STEM education pilot project. Over the next two years engineers and scientists from both of those organizations will work with students and teachers at the high school to design and build a green infrastructure project on the school campus involving water management work to address storm water quantity and quality concerns.

The 130-acre campus is a unique one. The site borders the sizable Fairmount Park and contains greenhouses, a working farm for a meat science program, a golf course, field crops and a pasture area for livestock.

The latest project has two goals: to bump up interest in green careers that involve science, technology, engineering and math by putting students in touch with mentors and immersing them in project-based learning; and to engage the broader school community in the value of green infrastructure for urban settings, which could include bioswales, small wetlands, green roofs and rain gardens.

"With this grant, teachers will be able to provide a true hands-on application of the agricultural curriculum that is currently being taught," noted agricultural dean, Jessica McAtamney, in a prepared statement. "The grant will enable Saul's teachers' to be at the forefront of teaching environmental technology."

"Studies show that informal science learning outside the classroom plays a crucial role in sustaining long-term understanding and interest in STEM fields," added Brigitte Griswold, director of youth engagement programs for the Conservancy. "The students who attend W.B. Saul High School will be leading the development of this green engineering solution right on their campus. This partnership will help further students' understanding, interest and engagement in STEM principles, as well as model career paths that will help develop the next generation of STEM leaders in our country."

US2020 was founded by Chevron and Tata Consultancy Services to celebrate organizations taking on STEM mentoring. This was the first year that the program recognized public-private partnerships. Another recipient of the same award was biotech company Genentech, which has committed to making science accessible for students within the South San Francisco Unified School District and which mobilizes Genentech employees to introduce young people to biotech.

Yahoo and Covestro, high-tech polymer supplier, were also recognized for excellence in corporate culture for promoting STEM "volunteerism" among their worldwide staffs. EnCorps STEM Teachers Program received an excellence in volunteer experience award for helping recruit, train, and support STEM professionals to teach and tutor California's most needy students in math and science. The same award also went to FIRST North Carolina, which uses robotics to inspire youth to pursue careers in science and technology and where STEM professionals tend to volunteer on average 200 hours per year.

Innovative Public-Private Partnership Honored at White House for Excellence in STEM Mentoring

As posted on The Nature Conservancy | August 15, 2016

CH2M’s Foundation, The Nature Conservancy and W.B. Saul High School in Philadelphia receive award for innovative, cross-sectoral approach to connecting students to real-world STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) learning opportunities.


 PHILADELPHIA, PA - The US2020 STEM Mentoring Awards are a platform to celebrate and encourage exceptional work in the STEM mentoring field. The Award for Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships recognizes the CH2M Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, and W.B. Saul High School’s innovative, cross-sectoral approach to connecting students with talented science and engineering professionals and provide real-world STEM learning opportunities.

“We are honored to receive this award, which recognizes that we can achieve bigger and better outcomes working together than we can on our own. Our collaboration makes us stronger and more effective, and we are thrilled about the opportunity for CH2M engineering professionals and Conservancy scientists to pass their knowledge and passion on to students through mentorship in real world green engineering projects,” said Ellen Sandberg, executive director of the CH2M Foundation and vice president of community investment.

In December 2015, the CH2M Foundation awarded a $200,000 grant to The Nature Conservancy to develop a green infrastructure—a resilient approach to water management—and STEM education pilot project at W.B. Saul High School’s campus in Philadelphia. Throughout 2016 and 2017, CH2M engineers and Conservancy scientists will work directly with students and faculty to design and construct a green infrastructure project on the school’s campus to work to address stormwater quantity and quality concerns.

“Studies show that informal science learning outside the classroom plays a crucial role in sustaining long-term understanding and interest in STEM fields,” said Brigitte Griswold, director of youth engagement programs for The Nature Conservancy. “The students who attend W.B. Saul High School will be leading the development of this green engineering solution right on their campus. This partnership will help further students’ understanding, interest and engagement in STEM principles, as well as model career paths that will help develop the next generation of STEM leaders in our country.”

The goal of the partnership is twofold: to engage students in science and engineering to increase student interest in green STEM careers through access to mentors and project-based learning, and to engage the school community around the value of green infrastructure solutions, which may include bioswales, pocket wetlands, green roofs, or rain gardens, that create healthier urban environments.

“The W.B. Saul School is thrilled to be a part of this initiative and extend learning opportunities to students through the living laboratory of our 130-acre campus,” said Tamera Conaway, principal of W.B. Saul High School.

“With this grant, teachers will be able to provide a true hands-on application of the agricultural curriculum that is currently being taught. The grant will enable Saul's teachers' to be at the forefront of teaching environmental technology," added Jessica McAtamney, agricultural dean of W.B. Saul High School.

“We are mentoring young leaders in green STEM principles and increasing green infrastructure in urban Philadelphia by leveraging our scientific expertise alongside CH2M’s engineering and infrastructure capabilities. Through this partnership, we are working toward creating a world where people and nature thrive together today and into the future,” said Julie Ulrich, urban conservation program director for The Nature Conservancy’s Pennsylvania chapter.

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About CH2M CH2M leads the professional services industry delivering sustainable solutions benefiting societal, environmental and economic outcomes with the development of infrastructure and industry. In this way, CH2Mers make a positive difference providing consulting, design, engineering and management services for clients in water; environment and nuclear; transportation; energy and industrial markets, from iconic infrastructure to global programs like the Olympic Games. Ranked among the World’s Most Ethical Companies and top firms in environmental consulting and program management, CH2M in 2016 became the first professional services firm honored with the World Environment Center Gold Medal Award for efforts advancing sustainable development. Connect with CH2M at www.ch2m.com; LinkedIn; Twitter; and Facebook.

About W.B. Saul High School  The Mission of the Walter Biddle Saul High School of Agricultural Sciences, a diverse learning community, is to develop in students an understanding of and appreciation for the career and leadership opportunities that are available to them in the many fields of agriculture.  It is also our commitment to cultivate each student's individual abilities to prepare him or her for a lifetime of productive academic, vocational, and civic endeavors.

 


The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the web at www.nature.org. To learn about the Conservancy’s global initiatives, visitwww.nature.org/global. To keep up with current Conservancy news, follow @nature_press on Twitter.

Citizen Schools Receives All Points North Foundation Grant to Fund Programming at Browne School

Citizen Schools is pleased to announce it has received a one-year grant from All Points North Foundation (APNF), a small, private foundation based in Boston, to support Citizen Schools’ growth to serve more students at the Joseph Browne Middle School in Chelsea, Massachusetts in the 2016-2017 school year. The $60,000 grant is the first APNF has provided to Citizen Schools – a national nonprofit focused on enriching the education of middle school students in six states through Expanded Learning Time (ELT) programs held during after school hours.

“Citizen Schools is deeply appreciative of this investment from All Points North Foundation,” said Megan Bird, executive director Massachusetts. “APNF’s focus on meaningful invention in the middle grades is directly aligned with Citizen Schools’ work to drive student impact through hands-on, project-based learning in under-served public middle schools.”

“All Points North Foundation is excited to fund Citizen Schools’ apprenticeship program for the entire 7th grade at the Browne Middle School in the 2016-2017 school year,” said Laura Staich, executive director at APNF. “We aim to help close the achievement gap for low-income middle school students in high-need communities like Chelsea, by providing them with access, experiences, and support that will prepare them for success in high school, college, and future careers.”

This new grant will help Citizen Schools continue to grow its apprenticeship program in Chelsea to serve more than 150 students at the Joseph Browne School – the entire 7th grade. Next year, in close partnership with the Chelsea Public School District and Superintendent Mary Bourque, Citizen Schools will serve all students in at the Browne School, and will serve the entire 5th and 6th grade at the Eugene Wright Science and Technology Academy, which amounts to over half of all middle school students in the city. Additionally, Citizen Schools aims to serve all middle school students in Chelsea by 2020.

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit http://www.citizenschools.org/

About All Points North Foundation

Established in 2011 in Boston, Mass., All Points North Foundation (APNF) is a small, private foundation that supports two distinctpriorities in the United States: evidence-based programs that measurably improve public middle school education and teacher training, and projects that promote solar energy awareness and implementation. APNF is dedicated to navigating communities upward. For more information, visit http://www.allpointsnorthfoundation.org.

Covestro gets STEM honors

20160602ng-Covestro2Covestro, a plastics and materials maker with North American headquarters in Robinson, received US2020’s STEM Mentoring Award for Excellence in Corporate Culture in recognition of its employee volunteer programs that support the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and math. Silicon Valley tech firm Yahoo was the other winner in the category. US2020 is an initiative to increase the number of STEM professionals who mentor and teach students. The awards were presented Thursday during a symposium held at the White House.

 

Covestro LLC Receives US2020's 2016 STEM Mentoring Award for 'Excellence in Corporate Culture'

PITTSBURGH, PA-- This morning, US2020 honored Covestro LLC with its 2016 STEM Mentoring Award for "Excellence in Corporate Culture." The national award recognizes Covestro's companywide i3STEM program, which ignites young minds to become the innovators of tomorrow through hands-on science experiences and employee volunteerism. As an award recipient, Covestro will be participating in a White House STEM Mentoring Symposium later today.

The mission of US2020, launched at the 2013 White House Science Fair, is to change the trajectory of STEM education in America by dramatically scaling the number of STEM professionals mentoring and teaching students, especially those who have been traditionally underrepresented in STEM fields.

More than 150 organizations participated in this year's award series, and Covestro was one of six companies selected for the honor.

"We were thrilled to see the variety and quality of organizations and companies that submitted applications to the 2016 STEM Mentoring Awards," said Nick Hutchinson, executive director of US2020. "Quality, skills-based mentorship is uniquely positioned to address the barriers to STEM access and achievement and has been shown to provide academic and emotional benefits for students, particularly at-risk youth."

Covestro, which operated as Bayer MaterialScience until September 2015, has a 60-year history of strengthening STEM education and fostering a diverse STEM workforce pipeline in the U.S. The company is now pioneering a new approach to STEM mentoring and volunteering with skills-based volunteerism (SBV). The US2020 award acknowledges Covestro's "exceptional work" in STEM mentoring.

"We are truly honored to receive this award, which caps off a successful first year as a new company with a new name," said Jerry MacCleary, president, Covestro LLC. "Our passion for STEM continues to be a fundamental part of our identity. This award not only highlights our commitment to advancing STEM education in communities nationwide, but it also reflects the dedication of our employee volunteers, who serve as mentors and role models to inspire the next generation of innovators."

Approximately 260 employee-volunteers at six U.S. Covestro sites work with more than 100 K-12 schools by participating in classroom visits, career fairs, science nights, mentoring, Girls in STEM programs and other special events. They also have hosted or engaged in dozens of career fairs and conferences at universities. Through these activities, Covestro employees have impacted more than 40,000 students.

That number continues to grow as the company implements a new, more inclusive approach with SBV. This innovative concept allows virtually any employee to be a STEM volunteer, contributing their particular expertise to solve problems and build capacity for both STEM and non-STEM organizations.

"SBV enables all of our employees to serve STEM education organizations in new and vital ways," said Rebecca Lucore, Covestro's head of Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility, North and South America. "For example, Covestro teams have developed a sustainability plan for a Smithsonian Institution affiliate museum, prepared STEM education programming for a world-class botanic garden, and solved a persistent accounting problem at a STEM-ed organization that couldn't afford paid consultants."

In addition, Covestro is creating and expanding local and national STEM education partnerships with greenlight for girls (g4g), American Chemical Society's Project SEED, and the Manufacturing Institute's STEP Ahead program, among others; sponsoring the Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair; and, supporting employees who volunteer with an official paid-time off policy.

About Covestro LLC:

Covestro LLC is one of the leading producers of high-performance polymers in North America and is part of the global Covestro business with 2015 sales of EUR 12.1 billion. Covestro manufactures high-tech polymer materials and develops innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical and sports and leisure industries. The Covestro group has 30 production sites around the globe and employed approximately 15,800 people at the end of 2015.

US2020 Honors Leaders of the STEM Mentoring Movement

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This morning, US2020 announced the winners of the second annual US2020 STEM Mentoring Awards. The awards are a national platform to celebrate and encourage exceptional work in the STEM mentoring field. US2020 and co-founding sponsors Chevron and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) are recognizing the winners for their achievements and innovations in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) mentoring. The US2020 award winners will also be participating in a White House STEM Mentoring Symposium that is occurring on August 11th. The second annual US2020 STEM Mentoring Awards included three award categories and two winners per category. Applications were evaluated by a cross-sector panel of judges. By category, this year’s winners are: Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships (CH2M and Genentech, Inc); Excellence in Corporate Culture (Yahoo and Covestro LLC); Excellence in Volunteer Experience (EnCorps STEM Teachers Fellowship and FIRST North Carolina).

Momentum in the field was evident as over 150 organizations participated in this year’s award series. “We are thrilled to see the variety and quality of organizations and companies submitting applications to the 2016 STEM Mentoring Awards,” said Nick Hutchinson, Executive Director of US2020. “Quality, skills-based mentorship is uniquely positioned to address the barriers to STEM access and achievement and has been shown to provide academic and emotional benefits for students, particularly at-risk youth.”

Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships, a new award category in 2016, was designed to highlight innovative collaborations in STEM mentoring that have the ability to scale. The award recognizes effective, cross-sector partnerships that are eliminating barriers for underserved and underrepresented students and communities. Genentech is a biotechnology company dedicated to discovering, developing, and manufacturing medicines to treat serious diseases such as cancer. Genentech has created a multi-year commitment that makes science accessible for students within South San Francisco. Genentech’s Futurelab program partners with South San Francisco Unified School District and mobilizes Genentech employees to explore the wonders of biotechnology with young people. Futurelab is designed to engage students from kindergarten through the completion of high school, while creating opportunities for students to develop meaningful relationships with Genentech professionals. CH2M, a global engineering firm, in concert with its charitable foundation and The Nature Conservancy, have partnered to serve more than 560 predominately underserved and underrepresented students at the Walter Biddle Saul High School of Agricultural Sciences in Philadelphia. Their multi-faceted project aims to teach students about natural infrastructure and its important role in sustaining healthy communities through project-based learning, including retrofitting their own school. The program creates opportunities for CH2M employees to play a meaningful role in the design, implementation and maintenance of the project. The project was noted for its strong potential to scale nationally.

US2020’s Excellence in Corporate Culture award honors companies that are promoting and supporting a culture of STEM volunteerism across all levels of their business operations. Yahoo promotes STEM volunteerism across 32 global offices through programs and policies that empower all employees to highimpact STEM mentoring. From their innovative paid-time-off and matching grant policies to their flagship Summer of Service campaign, Yahoo positions employees to serve as champions in their communities. Covestro LLC honors its commitment to employee volunteerism through their corporate social responsibility program, i3 - Ignite, Imagine, and Innovate, which supports local community engagement and provides guidelines, classroom kits and other materials that empower employees in the classroom. The i3 program, combined with a robust paid-time-off for volunteerism program has mobilized nearly 10 percent of its domestic workforce this year alone to high-impact STEM volunteerism.

The Excellence in Volunteer Experience award recognizes US2020 Education Partners that provide high-quality, well-supported engagements for their volunteers. Winners are selected based on the survey results submitted by their volunteers. EnCorps STEM Teachers Fellowship is forging unique public-private partnerships to recruit, train, and support STEM professionals to teach and tutor California’s most needy students in math and science. FIRST North Carolina, uses robotics to inspire youth to pursue careers in science and technology and engages STEM professionals in powerful ways. FIRST North Carolina volunteers are individually volunteering an average of over 200 hours per year. Nationally, FIRST engages 400,000 K-12 students and over 200,000 STEM professionals in its programs every year.

“Young people today need to acquire a transdisciplinary set of skills and a foundational knowledge of STEM disciplines, combined with an artistic and creative mind, in order to succeed,” said Surya Kant, President, North America, UK and Europe, TCS. We are proud of the dedicated efforts and achievements of the STEM Mentoring Awards winners, who are key contributors to shaping the youth of America for 21st STEM careers.

Please join us in celebrating these exceptional civic efforts to ignite moments of discovery for the next generation of leaders in STEM.

US2020 also announced finalists: Excellence in Corporate Culture (Booz Allen Hamilton); Excellence in Volunteer Experience (University City Science Center, Philadelphia, PA); Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships (Indiana University School of Informatics at IUPUI and WakeEd Partnership).

Media Contacts

Cristin Mitchell -- Ellis Strategies, Inc. cristin@ellisstrategies.com | 617.308.0771

Nikole Saulsberry -- US2020 nikolesaulsberry@us2020.org | 832.465.5291

About US2020

US2020, a division of Citizen Schools, developed from a White House call to generate large-scale, innovative solutions to our STEM education challenges. Its mission is to dramatically scale the number of STEM professionals mentoring and teaching students through hands-on projects with a focus on serving underrepresented communities -- girls, underrepresented minorities, and low-income children. US2020 is supported by national Co-Investors: Alcoa, CA Technologies, Chevron, Cisco, Discovery Communications, HP, Raytheon, SanDisk, Tata Consultancy Services, and Texas Instruments. Through partnerships at the national level and coalitions at the city level, US2020 has built a network of more than 250 organizations in 13 cities actively working to scale the STEM mentoring field, to align the field on common metrics, and to advance a focus on quality. The match-making process and data collection is supported by a dynamic online platform built by pro-bono developer Tata Consultancy Services. To learn more, visit www.us2020.org

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support, in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit www.citizenschools.org