New York (PRWEB) February 24, 2014
Hispanic students, the largest minority group in New York City public schools, are the focus of a new after school program in the Bronx designed to grow interest and skill in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.
The STEM Explorer Program for high school students is based at DeWitt Clinton High School, the first such program in New York City. The program is sponsored by LULAC National Education Services Center, Inc. (LNESC) and the Verizon Foundation, in partnership with The Sports Foundation.
Latino high school students meet two hours each week for hands-on laboratory work, technology instruction and off campus field trips as part of a work plan designed to encourage them to pursue science, engineering or technology related courses in high school and college. The instruction is led by teachers who are certified in STEM courses, and volunteer professionals will offer career counseling to students.
“As part of its mission to become the high school of choice for all families in the Bronx, DeWitt Clinton is proud to partner with the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and the LULAC National Educational Services Centers (LNESC) to bring its first STEM program to New York City public schools. Thanks to a sponsorship by Verizon, a group of students at DeWitt Clinton High School have the opportunity to experience and participate in this hands-on STEM after school program,” said Santiago Taveras, DeWitt Clinton High School principal. “This program is meant to ignite an interest to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, areas that hold the promise of future employment and economic success,” Taveras added.
“At Verizon, we believe in the transformative power of our technology and its role in improving outcomes and preparing students for success in the 21st century. We are excited to continue our partnership with LNESC in support of efforts to inspire more youth to pursue STEM-related careers,” said Emilio Gonzalez, Executive Director for Strategic Alliances, Verizon.
With Hispanics making up the largest minority group at colleges and universities across the U.S., the Bronx initiative is now part of a national effort to help develop Latino students’ interest and skills in the STEM fields.
“Our program targets Latinos, the fastest growing demographic in the U.S., so that we can increase the number of STEM career professions among Latinos,” said Richard Roybal, executive director of LNESC. “Once students are exposed to and become interested in these fields of study, they can aim for careers that will better serve their communities while also helping the U.S. remain competitive in the global marketplace.”
LNESC has seen results from other similar initiatives across the U.S., including higher grades in math and science courses recorded by participants, continued enrollment in high school STEM courses, and a rise in the number of underrepresented minorities in postsecondary STEM studies and careers.
Along with the Bronx, LNESC and the Verizon Foundations began this year a new round of STEM Explorer programs in other cities, including: Moody High School in Corpus Christi, TX; Kensington Health & Science Academy in Philadelphia, PA; McCollum High School in San Antonio, TX; Harrison High School in Colorado Springs, CO.
"LULAC Is proud to partner with the sports foundation & De Witt Clinton high school two prestigious organizations that have dedicated themselves to the advancement of the youth." Ralina Cardona, LULAC Vice President for the northeast.
LULAC National Educational Service Centers, Inc. (LNESC) was established in 1973 by the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) to provide educational programming to high-need students throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Throughout 14 education and technology centers, LNESC has served over 500,000 students, sent 150,000 students on to college, and awarded nearly $20 million in scholarships. LNESC’s results are made possible by a network of dedicated field staff, top-notch teachers, over 90 school partners, and the support of LULAC - the nation’s largest membership based Latino organization. LNESC works to change lives and build Latino communities, one student at a time. More information about LNESC and its programs can be found at http://www.LNESC.org.