- Jan. 21, 2021
-- On Wednesday, January 13th
, the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta announced $2,481,250 in grants to 63 nonprofits in the metro Atlanta Region; Science, Engineering and Mathematics Link Inc. (SEM Link) was one of the organizations that received funding during this round of grants. The current grant awards were influenced by community knowledge and issues arising form continued economic, educational and health impacts of the pandemic. These investments reflect the Community Foundation's commitment to increasing equity in the Atlanta region. Organizations led by or serving people of color were prioritized with a focus on Black and Latinx populations, representing 68% of the organizations and 64% of the grant dollars.
SEM Link's was awarded a $20,000 grant through the Community Foundation's Equity of Opportunity Architecture, a combination of proven practices to combat the disparity in our region and increase economic and social mobility. The Foundation has committed to 3 pillars upon which to ground their work to increase economic and social mobility in the 23-county region. SEM Link's grant was funded through the Prosperous People pillar which focuses on educational and vocational pathways for individuals, including early childhood education, post-secondary completion and career preparation and access. These general operating support grants were proactively inspired by information gather sessions with education experts and workforce development leaders to reimagine more equitable learning models in the workforce development ecosystem for marginalized students and to empower innovative delivery models in the workforce development ecosystem. Each organization was selected to be a part of the cohort because of a unique aspect, such as programmatic innovation, geography or population served in areas of PreK-12 education or workforce development.
The funding from this grant will support virtual program activities in SEM Link's two-core programs, Experimental Design Program (https://semsuccess.org/programs/experimental-design-program/
) and Math and Science Career Academy (https://semsuccess.org/programs/math-and-science-career-a...
). In our Experimental Design Program, SEM Link is launching two new programs, a Science Journal Club and Tick Tock STEM™
. Tick Tock STEM™
that will provide teens with guidelines for communicating STEM via social media and call for teens to post their videos on social media and tag us on our social media platforms. Our Science Journal Club in partnership with Morehouse School of Medicine Office of Pipeline Initiatives will provide high school students an opportunity to develop their STEM literacy skills by reviewing STEM journal articles. In our Math and Science Career Academy these funds will support resuming our STEM in the City workshops and Teen Science Cafes as well as our National Engineering Week Celebration in February, Pi Day and World Water Day celebrations in March and our annual STEM Career Fair in April. "The key factors for youth to feel confident in pursuing STEM careers are exposure and engagement. Exposure to positive adult role models in the STEM community to share their passion and expertise in STEM with youth. Engagement in activities that will provide opportunities for them to engage in hands-on STEM activities, learn what STEM professionals do and most importantly see themselves as STEM professionals. I am thankful to the Community Foundation of Greater Atlanta for supporting our work." states Ms. Tokiwa T. Smith, SEM Link Founder and Executive Director. SEM Link's past Math and Science Career Academy livestreamed events can be viewed on the organization's YouTube Channel, https://bit.ly/