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STEM Greenhouse aims to bridge the educational gap

STEM Greenhouse works to prepare children of color for STEM careers.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — STEM Greenhouse is a local non-profit organization on a mission to prepare children of color for careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.

Keli Christopher, the executive director and founder, has a Ph.D. in engineering.

You can see some of the program’s tutorials and experiments on YouTube.

Christopher says some schools in West Michigan don’t have access to science teachers because of staffing shortages. She says only 8% of Black students in 11th grade are proficient in math.

STEM Greenhouse aims to bridge that gap by partnering with schools to provide quality education.

“We seek out schools that have students who need the resources that we're providing," Christopher said. "We want to see good outcomes, academic outcomes for students of color. However, we do have some opportunities that are made available to the general public." 

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STEM Greenhouse offers a variety of programs, including summer programs, after-school clubs and agriculture programs. 

Through these opportunities, officials say students were more likely to take advanced math or science classes in high school. Improvement in attendance has also been noted for students.

The program was recently gifted $50,000 from Sony to purchase video equipment.

More information on STEM Greenhouse, their programs and support opportunities can be found here.

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