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% 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).
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 http://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.