The Tylers recognize that there is a great demand for technically trained employees and currently only 70,000 students are graduating each year. Clare notes that he recently read an article where Bill Gates was quoted as saying there is a shortage of as many as 3.4 million technically proficient employees.
Clare Tyler is a retired mechanical engineer and was employed by Standard Oil, which today is known as British Petroleum, for 38 years. At the time of his retirement, he was the General Manager of the oil refinery in Toledo, Ohio. Molly is a retired Professor of Nursing at the Medical College of Ohio. They began coming to Stuart in 1973 and live at Indian River Plantation.
The Library System recently completed a five-year plan including STEM programs, according to Brett Lear, Library Director. “The timing of this unexpected gift is fantastic because now we can begin programs in every branch”, Brett said. The check was presented to Priscilla Baldwin, President of the Foundation on December 14 at the Blake Library.
Priscilla noted that, “This special endowment gift given by the Tylers creates a lasting impact on our own Martin County youth which is what the Foundation pursues as its ongoing mission. It insures that generations to come have access to library programs focusing on science and engineering”
“In order to increase the number of qualified graduates, we need to start at an early age. STEM events will do just that,” commented Clare. MCLS Youth Services Manager Jennifer Salas remarked, “We have programs ready for children that will get them involved in science projects”. For instance elementary students will learn about the science behind paper airplanes, solar power and biomechanics that are improving sports like skateboarding and waterslides.
Discovery stations such as touch tanks and sensory tubs will allow preschool children to explore themes with different textures and learn about measurement, buoyancy and more.
Clare concluded by saying, “We hope that our gift will encourage others to do the same. Funding for education is essential and we are fortunate to have an excellent library system in Martin County”.
The Library Foundation of Martin County, founded in 1992, provides enhancements to the Martin County Library System by funding special library projects and capital improvements. Donations support cultural and educational programming and provide new technology and materials for the collection. In 2010 the Library System ranked first in the State of Florida in library visits per capita. For more information visit the website at www.libraryfoundationMC.org or phone 772-221-1409