Teach For America has announced a $5 million grant from the Biogen Idec Foundation to provide recruitment, training, and professional development opportunities to its corps of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teachers, as well as high-quality STEM educational opportunities for students in underresourced communities.
The five-year grant will enable TFA to expand its STEM initiative and address disparities in access to high-quality STEM education across the United States. Among other things, the funding will support customized training opportunities for STEM teachers, including the ability to collaborate with Biogen Idec employees at the biotech company's Community Labs in Massachusetts and North Carolina, and will provide students with opportunities for hands-on learning throughout the school year. In addition, a portion of the grant will support TFA's efforts to recruit college graduates and professionals.
"We're grateful that the Biogen Idec Foundation is committed to ensuring that all students have access to a transformational P-12 STEM education that will prepare them for success in college, career, and beyond," said Dr. Joseph Wilson, managing director of Teach For America's STEM initiative. "Since 2012, Biogen Idec Foundation's support has allowed us to increase the number of STEM teachers available in high-need schools and enhance the professional development opportunities available to them. In the next five years we look forward to bolstering efforts in Massachusetts and Eastern North Carolina, and expanding the best practices we've learned to help provide students nationwide with dedicated and inspiring STEM teachers and opportunities."