BOSTON - Students around the commonwealth will be better prepared to make career decisions after they graduate, and have the skills they need, thanks to Verizon Foundation.
The foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, is awarding EdLink grants totaling $400,000 to 25 educational and nonprofit organizations in Massachusetts to foster school-to-career programs for students in grades seven through 12. The EdLink grant program supports initiatives that link classroom instruction and community-based learning opportunities with the workplace. Now in its seventh year, EdLink has awarded a total of $3 million to fund educational programs at schools and other nonprofit organizations throughout the state.
Some of the grant-winners across Massachusetts include:
- Boston Public School's Odyssey High School, a recently created, environmentally focused high school that is part of the South Boston Education Center received $14,500 to teach students about environmental sciences in real-world situations.
- Brightside, Inc., an organization providing therapeutic educational services in Springfield, Mass., which received $15,000 to teach students in grades seven through 12 the work-related interpersonal skills needed to succeed in the labor market.
- SouthCoast Education Compact, a partnership between business leaders, school superintendents, University of Massachusetts/Dartmouth and Bristol Community College in Southeastern Massachusetts, which received $20,000 for a competency certification program that will improve the technology skills of students upon graduation.
All the grant-winners will receive their awards - which range up to $20,000 -- during ceremonies today (10/29) at the Museum of Science. (A complete list of this year's winners is included with this release.) Donna Cupelo, Verizon's region president for Massachusetts and Rhode Island, will honor the recipients at the ceremony. Guest speakers will include Dr. Michael Webb, program director for the Early College High School Initiative, a program of Jobs for the Future, and Dr. Ioannis Miaoulis, president and director of the Museum of Science, Boston.
&qout;Verizon believes it is our corporate responsibility to better prepare students for careers that promise a brighter future,&qout; said Cupelo. &qout;That's why Verizon has made it a priority over the years to support education and work force development initiatives. As one of the largest private employers in the commonwealth, we are committed to working with schools and nonprofits to help students forge stronger links between academics and the workplace. After all, the future success of our economy depends on the success of these young people.&qout;
An electronic portfolio with this year's EdLink winners is available at http://foundation.verizon.com/edlink.
Through its philanthropic initiatives, Verizon supports the work of the Massachusetts Department of Education's Office of School-to-Work. In addition to EdLink, Verizon also supports literacy programs including Verizon Reads, a national program that increases awareness, raises funds, encourages collaboration among literacy providers and engages employees in literacy programs; MassINC, a series of Skills Summits across Massachusetts that address literacy issues critical to the work force and the economy; and the Department of Education's Massachusetts Family Literacy Consortium pilot project, which funds five communities that serve as models of integration for literacy and support services. Overall, Verizon will invest more than $3 million in a variety of education and cultural programs in Massachusetts in 2003.
To view a full list of grant winners, please click here.
Verizon Foundation last year awarded 22,000 grants totaling more than $70 million to charitable and nonprofit agencies that focus on improving basic and computer literacy, enriching communities through technology, and creating a skilled work force. The foundation uses its resources in the United States and abroad to develop partnerships in technology and connect them with organizations serving the needs of diverse communities, people with disabilities, victims of domestic violence and the economically and socially disadvantaged. The foundation also supports Verizon Volunteers, an incentive program that last year encouraged Verizon employees to volunteer more than 500,000 hours in their communities and provided $27.8 million in combined contributions to charitable and nonprofit organizations. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.
A Fortune 10 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $67 billion in revenues and 221,000 employees. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with more than 139 million access line equivalents and 36 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is the third largest long-distance carrier for U.S. consumers, with nearly 16 million long-distance lines. The company is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.