80,000 Students Benefiting From Innovative STEM Education Projects
Unique Collaboration Among Private And Non-Profit Sectors Results In Funding For More Than 500 American Classrooms
New York (May 26, 2016) – DonorsChoose.org, FIRST? and News Corp announced today that, in honor of National Teacher Appreciation Month, more than 500 STEM classroom projects involving nearly 80,000 students have been funded throughout the United States.
The campaign to promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education was born out of a unique collaboration between News Corp philanthropy partners DonorsChoose.org, a crowd-funding platform for teachers, and FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a leader in K-12 STEM education. The two organizations joined forces to nurture technology and engineering education in public schools through the use of Robotics.
News Corp supported the initiative through a “Double Your Impact” match offer of $350,000 that resulted in $500,000 of funding for 548 projects across 452 schools in America.
“News Corp’s investment for this campaign marks the largest match offer we have ever had solely focused on Robotics, inspiring teachers to post hundreds of the most innovative STEM projects on our site,” said Charles Best, founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org. “We’re thrilled to have collaborated with News Corp and FIRST to fund robotics projects nationwide, and to honor the teachers who are finding exciting ways to educate their students about STEM.”
“As we continue to expand engagement in FIRST to more and more classroom teachers across the country, we are very excited to partner with DonorsChoose.org and we are grateful for News Corp’s visionary support of this powerful collaboration,” said FIRST President Donald E. Bossi.
“Our vision for the News Corp Philanthropy Partners program has always been to inspire a multiplier effect for the non-profit organizations we support,” said Keisha Smith-Jeremie, Chief Human Resources Officer for News Corp. “The innovation shown by our charitable partners in joining forces is exactly the kind of connectivity we’ve worked to foster. We are proud to support this partnership, which will extend the scope of impact on STEM education into hundreds of American classrooms.”
“Donors who are ready to donate wait until there’s a match,” said Monique Dituri, a longtime FIRST volunteer mentor who coaches the Robotics team at a high-poverty public high school in New Jersey. “The fact that News Corp helped us do this, now people are more likely to say ‘sure, we’ll help you.’ “
The aim of the 2016 campaign was to encourage motivated teachers like Ms. Dituri to engage students on STEM concepts using robotics. With the support from News Corp, one of Ms. Dituri’s students, Dominic Estanislao, captained the team in a FIRST? Robotics Competition against 120 other teams from the district. Dominic’s team came in fourth, and qualified for the World Championships.
The FIRST Robotics Competition challenges teams of students from around the country to build and program a 120-lb, 5-foot robot. In preparing for the competition, students learn about mechanics and engineering, how to work in teams, develop a business plan, and fundraise.
“Robotics is not really about building robots,” said Mr. Estanislao. “It’s about building people.”
For a full list of funded projects, please visit: https://www.donorschoose.org/giving/news-corp-stem-match-offer/20710852/
News Corp contributions underscore its charitable goals: enriching the lives of vulnerable youth, advancing innovation in K-12 education, improving digital literacy, supporting a free press and aiding veterans.
News Corp + DonorsChoose.org
DonorsChoose.org has been a Philanthropy Partner of News Corp since 2014, and was chosen to help the company invest in and transform communities where many of its people live and work. Last year, in honor of National Teacher Appreciation Day, News Corp flash-funded all outstanding DonorsChoose.org school projects in Brooklyn, NY. In 2014, News Corp helped bring books, instruments, supplies and technology to thousands of Brooklyn schools.
News Corp + FIRST
News Corp’s support of FIRST is helping to build an ecosystem of teachers across the United States working to nurture FIRST competition teams. In 2015, News Corp sponsored six high school teams in New York, London and Sydney, as they prepared to compete in the FIRST International Robotics Competition, as well as funding multi-year college scholarships for graduating high school seniors.
About News Corp
News Corp (NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV) is a global, diversified media and information services company focused on creating and distributing authoritative and engaging content to consumers throughout the world. The company comprises businesses across a range of media, including: news and information services, book publishing, digital real estate services, and cable network programming and pay-TV distribution in Australia. Headquartered in New York, the activities of News Corp are conducted primarily in the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom. More information: http://www.www.chicfaced.com.
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