Exelon Foundation gift builds momentum for STEM Partnership School on AU campus
It’s never easy to move an innovative idea from conception to implementation, but a few early believers with credibility and influence can make all the difference when it comes to building momentum.
The STEM Partnership School at Aurora University found one of its champions Tuesday when the Exelon Foundation announced a $500,000 gift to help create a new national model for mathematics and science education on the AU campus. After years of building community and legislative support for the project, interest in the collaborative school is growing from major corporations and foundations with a stake in the future of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education.
“It takes a long time to get here, but I always believe that cream rises to the top,” said Frank Clark, Exelon Foundation board member and chairman and CEO of ComEd, during a press conference announcing the gift. “Something that’s really significant, that’s going to make a difference in the lives of young people, will eventually get done. The Exelon Foundation is so proud to support this.”
Rebecca L. Sherrick, President of Aurora University, called the STEM Partnership School “a labor of love for all of us” and “a project that comes from the heart of our community.”
In addition to the Exelon Foundation gift, the Aurora-based Dunham Fund announced a matching gift of $150,000, bringing the private foundation’s total support to half a million dollars. The Dunham Fund provided seed money for the school in 2008.
“For this school to become a reality, we need additional funding from sources like the Exelon Foundation,” said Michael Morcos, vice chairman of the Dunham Fund Board of Advisors. “So we certainly welcome any funders who want to join our team and join this great project.”
The STEM Partnership School is the cornerstone of the Mathematics and Science Education Center of Aurora University, which was launched to improve STEM education in the community and across the country. The school will initially serve approximately 200 third- through eighth-grade students in the Aurora East, Aurora West, Indian Prairie and Oswego school districts and be staffed by district teachers who will simultaneously complete AU graduate coursework in STEM fields.
- Beacon-News: Exelon donates $500,000 to Aurora math-science partnership
- Oswego Patch: Exelon Foundation Gives $500,000 to Partnership School
- Campus Technology: Aurora U STEM Model School Gets Financial Boost