LA Schools To Receive STEM Funds From Dow Chemical, Nonprofit

MIDLAND, MI — To kick off national Engineers Week, 5 Louisiana grade schools will receive funding from Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE: DOW) and the nonprofit Project Lead The Way (PLTW) to increase access to to high-quality science, technology, engineering and math education programs.

         The programs are for students in kindergarten through 12th grade and will engage students in STEM fields while developing skills in critical thinking, problem solving and collaboration.

         The Louisiana schools chosen are Plaquemine High School in Plaquemine, LA, East St. John High School in Reserve, LA, East St. John Elementary in Laplace, LA, Port Allen High School in Port Allen, LA and Brusly High School in Brusly, LA.

         Dow reps say their support of PLTW furthers the Company’s commitment to building the workforce of tomorrow in the four key communities where their employees live.

         A total of 17 schools were selected in Louisiana, Indiana, Michigan and Pennsylvania and enroll more than 14,000 students of which about half are minority students. They will all share the $400,000 commitment.

         “STEM-based careers fuel innovation at Dow,” Rob Vallentine, director of Corporate Citizenship at Dow, said. “We are proud to partner with Project Lead The Way to bring curriculum into our communities’ classrooms that will support teachers by giving them the tools they need to teach STEM subjects, and get students excited about pursuing STEM careers. The students of today represent the future of this country’s economic prosperity, and Dow is committed to supporting the STEM workforce of tomorrow in our communities.”

         “The United States is facing a significant skills gap, and Dow is taking action to fill that gap,” PLTW President and CEO Dr. Vince Bertram said. “They are leading by example. Not only are they creating skilled jobs in our economy, but they are helping to develop the workforce to fill those jobs. We are grateful for Dow’s support of Project Lead The Way, which is giving students across the country access to high-quality educational opportunities.”

         The U.S. Department of Commerce estimates 1.2 million unfilled STEM jobs by 2018 as a result of a lack of qualified, trained workers. Coincidentally, STEM jobs are expected to grow by 17 percent, nearly double the rate of jobs in other sectors. Expanding access to STEM education for underrepresented minority students is also of great interest as only 10 percent of U.S. scientists and engineers come from underrepresented minority groups.

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