Grants help establish robotics programs, increase exposure to STEM education and facilitate hands-on learning.
FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Bosch Community Fund (BCF) has granted $50,000 to four programs in the Broward and Miami-Dade counties to support robotics and science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. The grants will go toward programs led by Florida International University, Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Broward College Foundation and Broward County Public Schools and will benefit local students and teachers.
According to Jerry Smith, general manager, FHP Manufacturing Co., “At Bosch, we want to partner with the local school systems and universities that are encouraging students to gain hands-on experience with STEM education. The grant applications this year has been extremely high-quality. The programs that we honor today will provide engaging learning opportunities to drive interest in STEM careers and perhaps a future career with Bosch.”
Since 2012, the BCF has worked collaboratively with educational establishments and communities across the U.S. to help advance STEM education and environmental sustainability programs. Each year, teachers submit projects that are evaluated by teams of Bosch and BCF representatives and approximately $3 million in grants are awarded annually.
The grants for the Miami-Dade and Broward Counties will go toward establishing new, and expanding existing programs, targeted at a variety of educational levels:
* Broward Robotics – Building a Pipeline for Robotics in Broward Schools:
This program received a grant of $23,000 to support Broward County Public Schools to build a pipeline of students with an interest in STEM. Broward Robotics will provide authentic STEM experiences, through computer science and robotics, for 20 Title I elementary and middle schools that are new to robotics. The grant will also support five robotics teams. In the first year, the program will impact at least 350 students who currently have no access to computer science or robotics initiatives in their schools.
* Miami-Dade County Public Schools STEM Humanoid Robot:
Bosch awarded a $10,000 grant to support the purchase of a NAO Humanoid Robot for the Science, Engineering, Communications and Mathematics Enhancement (SECME) Stars after-school program. This program serves more than 450 K-5 grade school students from four Miami-Dade Title I schools.
The goal of the program is to improve student achievement in all content areas with a focus on STEM. The program activities include: humanoid robot programming and presentations; professional development for teachers; programming opportunities to enhance student coding abilities; project-based learning activities to increase student engagement and performance in science and math; and parent presentations to increase parent engagement in the SECME Stars program.
* Florida International University’s Engineers on Wheels:
A $10,000 grant will support Florida International University’s (FIU) Engineers on Wheels program. This program builds on the success of the FIU Engineering Expo, the college’s premier outreach event, and will take the Expo into local schools.
Engineers on Wheels will bring the world of engineering and computer science to an estimated 6,500 students in K-12 classrooms through hands-on activities designed to spark students’ interest, imagination and intent to pursue further STEM exploration. The format will feature interactive lessons, presentations and experiments led by FIU students.
* Broward College Foundation Project-Based Learning:
This $7,000 grant will support Broward College’s Teacher Education Program, which will provide project-based learning professional development for nine teachers from three Title I Broward County Middle Schools. Project-based learning provides students with preparation in problem solving and includes students as participants in the instructional process, instead of just receivers of information. This type of active and engaged learning inspires students to acquire a deeper understanding of STEM fields. Approximately 1,500 middle school students will be impacted through this program.
Earlier this year, Bosch awarded $50,000 to support three organizations in The Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties – The Boys and Girls Club of Broward County, Florida Atlantic University and Miami Dade College North Campus – to support STEM activities.