The Ford Fund Inspires Detroit’s Next Generation of Engineers

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The Ford Motor Company Fund grants $120,000 to the SME Education Foundation to encourage engineering students to pursue their post-high school dreams.

Ford Blue Oval Scholars

It has been said that students who are inspired are happier individuals who perform better than those confined to an environment that lacks consistent and progressive encouragement. The Ford Motor Company Fund recognizes the importance of motivating our future workforce and continues to encourage students in pursuit of degrees in engineering and technology-related programs with scholarship funding. The Ford Fund granted $120,000 to the SME Education Foundation to support the Ford Blue Oval Scholars Operation Better World – Detroit program and the Michigan Engineering Zone (MEZ).

This year, through the Blue Oval Scholars program, the Ford Motor Fund celebrated the achievements of more than 140 graduating seniors from 10 Detroit-area high schools. The $250, $1,000 and $5,000 awards were presented in June at a ceremony held at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African-American History. The recipients attended one of 10 area high schools: Central, Cody, Northwestern, Southeastern and Western – all in Detroit; and Harper Woods High School, Mount Clemons High School, Pontiac High School, River Rouge High School and Ypsilanti High School.

The support doesn’t stop there. The Ford grant will also provide funding to students who enrolled in the Michigan Engineering Zone (the MEZ), the University Of Michigan College Of Engineering high school student support program. The MEZ is designed to prepare students to compete in a global economy with an advanced manufacturing education. Each of four students received a $5,000, one-year scholarship to assist with college expenses. The winning students were recommended and selected based on their outstanding performance and leadership skills displayed during this season at the MEZ. Each student will be pursuing a four-year engineering degree.

“Ford’s donation will help put Detroit metro area youth on the right path to becoming the next generation of engineers and technology workers,” said Bart Aslin, CEO of the SME Education Foundation. “Young people have to be supported and made more aware of how advanced technologies are redefining the world, and the importance of their being educated in order for them to be a part of it. Ford’s ongoing commitment helps ensure an effective, efficient and innovative workforce.”

About Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services
Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services works with community partners to advance driving safety, education and American heritage and community life. For more than 60 years, Ford Motor Company Fund has operated with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company. The award-winning Ford Driving Skills for Life program teaches new drivers through a variety of hands-on and interactive methods. Innovation in education is encouraged through programs that enhance high school learning and provide college scholarships and university grants. Through the Ford Volunteer Corps, more than 25,000 Ford employees and retirees work on projects each year that better their communities in more than 30 countries. For more information, visit http://www.community.ford.com

About SME Education Foundation
The SME Education Foundation is committed to inspiring, preparing and supporting the next generation of manufacturing engineers and technologists in the advancement of manufacturing education. Created by SME in 1979, the SME Education Foundation has provided more than $33 million since 1980 in grants, scholarships and awards through its partnerships with corporations, organizations, foundations and individual donors. Visit the SME Education Foundation at http://www.smeef.org. Also visit http://www.CareerMe.org for information on advanced manufacturing careers and http://www.ManufacturingisCool.com, our award-winning website for young people.

Media Contact
Jennifer Richmond, Marketing Specialist, SME Education Foundation, 313.425-3306, jrichmond(at)sme(dot)org

Follow us on Twitter @mfgeducation to stay up-to-date with SME Education Foundation news and events.

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Jennifer Richmond
@mfgeducation
since: 09/2009
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