Bronx Institutions Get $25K Grant to Continue STEM Education

Two Bronx cultural institutions have been given the green light to generate more interest in STEM subjects thanks to a renewed grant by the state’s largest utility firm.

The New York Botanical Garden in Bedford Park and Wave Hill conservatory in Riverdale will each receive a $25,000 grant by Con Edison to help pay for educators under the company’s STEM Days Out program. The program brings in teachers specializing in science, technology, engineering and math, known as STEM subjects.

“Students will see and touch exhibits, and learn from experts they would not ordinarily meet at school,” said Frances A. Resheske, Con Edison senior vice president for corporate affairs. “This is a wonderful opportunity for students to broaden their perspectives by visiting these great centers of learning.”

At the New York Botanical Garden, middle school students who’ve previously taken a STEM workshop have studied pollution and aquatic life at the Bronx River. Funds for the program typically go towards paying for supplies.

Jobs linked to STEM subjects are in high demand in the U.S. these days. The Bronx still lags in the number of residents specializing in STEM-related work. Statistics from the National Science Foundation compiled in 2013 show just six percent of the country’s scientists and engineers are Hispanic and five percent are black.

Public middle schools from Title I can apply for the program, which will be held the first Wednesday of each month through May 2018. The New York Botanical Garden and Wave Hill decides which students take part in the program.

Wave Hill and the New York Botanical Garden are two of eleven institutions chosen by Con Edison.

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