National Semiconductor Foundation recently partnered with organizations around the world in an effort to bolster science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs in academia - from teacher development to hands-on classroom learning. Grant recipients were selected based on their commitment to STEM learning and their overall investment in teacher development surrounding such subjects. The grant was awarded to educational institutions and nonprofits in California and Maine, United States; Greenock, Scotland; and Melaka, Malaysia, all communities where National Semiconductor has a significant employee presence.
"We have a long standing commitment to improving the sciences in school," said Don Macleod, chief executive officer at National Semiconductor. "Over the past 14 years, we invested $6 million in teacher training and materials in technology, science and math. Our goal is to provide teachers with the knowledge and tools to teach in a way that gets kids excited about science and math so they will be better equipped for tomorrow’s work force."
The $1.2 million Power of Education grant was awarded to the following five groups, across four locations:
Schmahl Science Workshops, together with the Santa Clara, CA County Office of Education and the Resource Area For Teaching, will receive $325,000 over three years to provide direct training, modeling and ongoing support to teachers in the integration of hands-on science labs and applied math in their curriculum. The goal is to significantly improve the quality of science instruction provided to middle school students in the East Side Union High School District feeder schools, increasing their interest and achievement in science and math.
The Silicon Valley Education Foundation and East Side Union High School District will receive $350,000 over three years to initiate "Stepping up to Science," a project that combines intensive professional development and a summer intervention program aimed at preparing students to enroll in ninth grade biology. The goal is to change how science is taught and to significantly increase the number of students who successfully complete high school science requirements.
South Portland MaineSchool District will receive $225,000 over three years to provide leadership, training, support and materials to implement science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) project-based learning for middle school students. The goal is to provide innovative and interactive STEM education that results in significantly increased student interest and achievement in science and math.
Greenock, Scotland's Inverclyde Educational Services will receive $225,000 over three years to fund extensive professional development, ongoing support and materials to secondary level math and science teachers in the area of cooperative learning. Through the program, teachers will increase their subject matter knowledge and enhance their teaching methods, resulting in an increase in student interest and achievement across science and math.
In Melaka, Malaysia the Asia Foundation will receive $100,000 over four years to provide scholarships to low-income students interested in studying science, math and engineering in college. In addition, the grant will provide student internships and up-to-date engineering texts and materials to partner universities in Malaysia.
National Semiconductor’s worldwide Power of Education initiative invests in programs that not only increase teacher’s content knowledge, but focus on inquiry-based methods, hands-on experience and the connection of literacy in teaching science and math.
In the field of education, which represents more than 50% of National Semiconductor Foundation’s total giving, the focus has always been on teachers - specifically providing them with the training, tools and support to inspire and educate students in science and math. The Power of Education grant advances this initiative.