Verizon Champions Innovative STEM Programs in 4 Underserved Rhode Island Public Schools

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Michele Cinquegrano
$80,000 in Verizon Innovate Learning Grants to Help Schools Stimulate Students’ Interest in Tech Fields
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PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Four Rhode Island public schools have been awarded a total of $80,000 to improve student achievement in science, technology, engineering and math through the Verizon Innovate Learning Grants program. 

They are among 80 public schools across the country selected to each receive a $20,000 grant as part of Verizon’s investment to stimulate student interest and achievement in STEM.

The Rhode Island grant recipients are: the Highlander Charter School, Providence; James R.D. Oldham Elementary School, East Providence; Providence Career & Technical Academy;  and The Learning Community Charter School, Central Falls. Eligible to apply for a Verizon Innovate Learning Grant were public elementary, middle and high schools in all 50 states (plus the U.S. territories) in which at least 70 percent of students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch.

(Read about how each school will use the grants.)

“We created this program to support the integration of innovative STEM initiatives in underserved schools across the country, and we are pleased to recognize the schools that have been chosen to receive the award,” said Justina Nixon-Saintil, education program director for the Verizon Foundation. “The proposal submitted by the Rhode Island schools exemplifies the types of initiatives that will provide exposure to students around STEM fields, and also offer students hands-on, project-based learning opportunities that will help increase their interest and achievement in STEM.”

The significant demand for STEM-educated workers has been well documented in recent years, and a 2014 report found that the STEM job market is even larger than had been reported previously. 

The Verizon Innovate Learning Grants program is part of Verizon’s commitment to the Obama administration’s ConnectED initiative, under which Verizon is providing up to $100 million in cash and in-kind contributions to drive student achievement, especially in STEM subjects.

About the Verizon Foundation

The Verizon Foundation is focused on accelerating social change by using the company’s innovative technology to help solve pressing problems in education, healthcare and energy management.  Since 2000, the Verizon Foundation has invested more than half a billion dollars to improve the communities where Verizon employees work and live. Verizon’s employees are generous with their donations and their time, having logged more than 6.8 million hours of service to make a positive difference in their communities.  For more information about Verizon’s philanthropic work, visit www.verizon.com/about/responsibility/; or for regular updates, visit the Foundation on Facebook (www.facebook.com/verizonfoundation) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/verizongiving).