Secondary-school students across the nation who aspire to careers in technology or engineering will benefit from grants given to the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) Education Foundation by four organizations committed to keeping America's manufacturing sector strong.
Autodesk, Inc., Emerson, PBG Industries and the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance announced financial donations to the Gateway Academy programs, which sponsor summer camps where talented secondary school students explore careers in science, technology, engineering and math. The SME Education Foundation organizes Gateway Academies across the country, in concert with Project Lead the Way (PLTW), a non-profit that creates innovative pre-engineering curriculum. SME Education Foundation and PLTW are dedicated to filling the projected shortfall in American engineers, so a major goal of Gateway Academies is to motivate students to participate in PLTW Gateway to Technology courses during the school year, and to encourage enrollment in college-preparatory science and math courses.
"Thanks to these generous organizations, we are able to continue helping steer young people toward careers in engineering and technology," said Bart Aslin, executive director of the SME Education Foundation. "Their ongoing commitment to science, technology, engineering and math education is essential as we equip the future workforce with the skills necessary for success."
Autodesk donated $50,000 to sponsor one student at each of 25 Gateway Academy programs across the U.S. this summer. Autodesk has partnered with PLTW for 10 years, providing powerful Autodesk 2D and 3D design software that allows students to visualize their ideas and to understand the real-world relevance of science, technology, engineering and math. Emerson gave $60,000 to support Gateway Academy programs in Ohio and St. Louis. The South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance will help sponsor 19 Gateway Academy programs in its home state with a gift of $30,000. Additionally, PGB Industries donated a grant to support Gateway Academy programs in Ohio and Michigan.
For more information about the Gateway Academy and other SME Education Foundation programs, go to www.sme.org/foundation.