“building the next generation of Ethnic STEM professionals”
Written by Samantha Williams, Sr. Contributing Writer
FACT: By 2022, STEM careers will grow faster than any other industry! FACT: The national average wage for STEM occupations, $87,570, is considerably higher than all other occupations, $51,960. FACT: Unfortunately, African Americans & Hispanic professionals account for 16% of all STEM professionals. The Ethnic Online STEM Foundation (EOL STEM Foundation) seeks to change this, ensuring minorities have a larger representation in STEM.
Founder & Executive Director, Leonard Webb, states, “The EOL STEM Foundation will offer STEM 101 Workshops designed to educate parents on the value of a STEM education and learn how to identify STEM potential in their children. We will also provide STEM summer camps throughout New England for children 5-10 years of age and support high school students by providing STEM college preparation and career-readiness activities.” This is just the start of the foundations vision.
To help make all this possible, several STEM professionals serve on the EOL STEM Foundation Advisory Board. According to board member George Llado, Sr. VP and CIO at Alexion, “the EOL STEM Foundation will equip children with the education needed to be competitive in STEM.”
Dr. Ruth Blake, Advisory Board member and geologist and biogeochemist at Yale University, hopes “the EOL STEM Foundation will increase awareness of STEM careers.” Dr. Blake will provide STEM curriculum and hands-on experience in STEM field
18% of African American first-year students enrolled in a STEM major. 40% of African American students switched majors from STEM to other majors, resulting in only 12% of African American Students earning STEM degrees.
Principal and co-founder of the Pathways in Technology Early College High Schools (P-TECH) School and Advisory Board member, Karen Amaker, wants to improve this statistic. She states, “we must prepare students for STEM careers.” As an administrator of a STEM school, Karen “will make connections between the Foundation and other organizations.”
In 2018, 2.4 million STEM jobs were vacant due to a shortage of STEM professionals.
Medria Blue-Ellis, Principal of the Engineer Science University Magnet School (ESUMS) and Advisory Board member, is committed to “planting and harvesting seeds of talent in our children.” Medria leverages her educational experience of twenty-five years, including being principal of a leading STEM school for eight years
Firefighter, Lieutenant Matthew Sarracco states, “STEM provides opportunities that our children must be prepared to receive.” As an Advisory Board member, Lieutenant Sarracco relies on his Fire Department experience, which is heavily rooted in STEM.
According to Leonard, “there are several great STEM schools grades 6-12 that exist, if we can prepare our young children for these schools, such as ESUMS & P-Tech, we help lay the foundation.” Webb continues “it’s no secrete that leading countries like China & India are at the top of the STEM field because their kids are exposed to STEM at a very early age, thus giving them a competitive edge.” Our foundation will help to prepare our kids by providing them with the tools they need at an early age, thus helping to lay their STEM foundation.
Advisory Board member, Latisha Douglas, is confident “the EOL STEM Foundation will expose youth to STEM, which is vital because many children do not receive STEM education. The STEM camps will help increase the percentage of minorities in STEM.”
Our Advisory Board members are committed to the success of the organization.
We are honored to have the support of STEM leaders, such as Alexion Pharmaceuticals. Webb Mason Marketing, Yale University, Diageo, Walmart, and Pyramid Family Dental have also provided valuable support.
Advisory Board member and Grant Writer, Takiya Green, is excited to work with an organization committed to “making an impact, providing knowledge, and creating opportunities for minorities.”
You can help support the next generation of ethnic STEM professionals. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how you can join our mission of producing the next generation of ethnic STEM professionals. Or log on to www.ethniconlinestem.org and get involved!