December 18, 2008

Organizations interested in encouraging girls to explore careers in math and science related fields can apply for a mini-grant from the Kentucky Girls Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Collaborative. Grant applications will be available Jan. 2 through Jan. 31.

STEM will award mini-grants of up to $1,000 to teachers, school administrators and leaders of community organizations who are interested in completing projects to further school-aged girls' interests in math and science. These projects can be single or multiple day events.

"Our goal is to convince Kentucky's girls and their parents that careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics are exciting, pay well, desirable and attainable," said Nancy Martin, collaborative grant coordinator and professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of Louisville.

The Kentucky Girls' STEM Collaborative is comprised of women in math and science related fields across the state. The University of Kentucky is the lead organization in the collaborative.

"These grants are a wonderful opportunity for schools, community organizations and businesses within Kentucky to partner on a program to educate girls about the science and engineering fields and, at the same time, dispel the myth that these fields are ‘just for boys,'" said Sue Scheff, chair of the collaboration and coordinator of UK's Appalachian and Minority Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Majors (AMSTEMM) program.

Earlier this year, the group, which is a part of the National Girls Collaborative Project, awarded $7,043 to eight organizations that had programs focused on getting girls in elementary, middle and high schools interested in pursuing math and science related careers.

Applications will be available online beginning Jan. 2 at the National Girls Collaborative Project's Web site at http://www.pugetsoundcenter.org/ngcp/mini-grant/index.cfm.

The collaborative will announce the mini-grant recipients by mid-March.

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