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$1.5 million grant to boost New York City's STEM education efforts for middle and high school students

Christian Fernsby |
New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced a $1.5 million grant from Pfizer to the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City with funds earmarked for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) educational programs for middle and high school students.

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Specifically, this $1.5 million grant will advance the goals of two STEM-related initiatives: Exploring Futures and College Now for Careers.

Exploring Futures serves middle school students by helping them learn more about potential career paths and plan for success in the world of work. The grant will provide $750,000 over the course of three years and help expand the program to 15 additional schools, supporting educational opportunities for 750 students.

Funds will support giving students access to Xello, an online platform for career exploration and planning; advance teacher training and professional development; develop additional curriculum; and engage partner organizations to provide STEM content and related enrichment.

College Now for Careers — a partnership between the New York City Department of Education (DOE) and The City University of New York (CUNY) —enables New York City public high school students to earn college credits at CUNY by completing required courses for STEM majors.

The grant will provide $675,000 over the course of three years, supporting as many as 1,000 students to benefit from the program.

Both Exploring Futures and College Now for Careers are initiatives that the Mayor’s Office of Youth Employment (MOYE), developed in support of the city’s goal of universal career readiness.

Exploring Futures — launched in 2020 — currently operates in nine middle schools, serving 225 students in sixth through eighth grades.

The program’s objectives include supporting youths to both explore potential careers and inform their high school selection process. College Now for Careers is a College Now initiative. College Now — a partnership of DOE and CUNY — is the country’s largest program enabling high school students to earn college credit.

It serves over 20,000 students per year, giving them a leg up on college enrollment, persistence, and completion. College Now for Careers served 2,000 students in the school year 2021-2022 and will service another 1,000 students in the upcoming 2022-2023 year.

The nonprofit ExpandED — renowned for their innovative after-school and enrichment programming — is supporting the Mayor’s Fund, MOYE, DOE, and participating schools in managing the program.


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