“Science is not only a discipline of reason but, also, one of romance and passion.” -Stephen Hawking.
As the world mourns the passing of Stephen Hawking, one of the greatest scientists of our time, science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) opportunities continue to be the fastest-growing of all occupational sectors, according to The NEA Foundation. Most of these STEM jobs require education beyond high school, and the United States is projected to fall short of demand for highly-educated workers by as much as five million by 2020 (NEA Foundation). As a result, school districts across the nation are striving to give students tools to get them excited about and interested in STEM fields. Below are some grants that can help get STEM initiatives into more schools.
Expert Advice: Be clear on need. Examples:
• Adjusting your curriculum to meet The Next Generation Science Standards.
• Preparing students to meet goals on standardized tests.
Also, be clear and realistic on goals. Examples:
• Put in place new collaborative curriculum geared toward STEM.
• Helping students reach test benchmarks in these subject areas.
The NEA Foundation supports STEM education by increasing access to and improving the quality of STEM programs in underserved communities. Grant funding can be used toward in-school, after school, or summer activities. This grant can also be used for professional development for educators, as long as such teacher training relates to STEM initiatives. Last year two districts were awarded $150,000 grants. Applications are accepted at any time and are reviewed three times a year.
These grants focus on the science part of STEM. Funding can be used to support ideas that enhance classroom learning, foster student development, and reveal the wonders of chemistry. Specifically, grants can be used for laboratory equipment and supplies, instructional materials, professional development, student-conducted field studies, and student-led science outreach events. Teachers can request up to $1,500 for their ideas. Applicants must be U.S. high school chemistry teachers. The deadline for the 2018-19 funding is April 16.
Through this foundation, Honda has awarded more than $37 million to organizations serving over 117 million people in every state in the U.S. Honda supports youth education with a specific focus on the STEM subjects. Non-profit organizations, public school districts, and private/public elementary and secondary schools are eligible to apply. The grant range is from $20,000 to $75,000 over a one-year period. The deadline for application submission for applicants who have received a Honda grant in the past is May 1. The deadline for application submission for applicants who have not previously received a Honda grant is Aug. 1.
Focusing on the technology section of STEM, the ESA Foundation’s grant program seeks to ensure youth aged 7-18 have access to and are educated by technology, computers, or video games. Programs that “train the trainer” are also eligible for funding, as long as those trained will use their education to impact youth through technology. Eligible candidates are non-profit organizations or governmental units.
There is no set amount for ESA Foundation grants, though it is unlikely that first-time ESA Foundation grantees would receive more than $50,000. Letters of intent must be received by May 15.
|Expert Advice: To meet non-profit eligibility requirements of some foundations, schools can partner with parent teacher organizations (PTO, PTA) or local municipalities.||