The PPG Foundation has invested approximately $135,000 to support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) educational initiatives in Dallas, Chicago and Atlanta.
The grants highlight PPG’s commitment to the communities where the company has a presence and the foundation’s priority of increasing STEM educational opportunities for youth. The donations were made in 2018 on behalf of PPG’s architectural coatings business, which operates nearly 40 PPG PAINTS stores in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, and another 16 in Chicago.
In the Dallas and Fort Worth areas, the PPG foundation provided a $15,000 grant to Illuminate STEM to encourage, empower and equip more than 1,000 elementary, middle and high school students from underrepresented communities through industry-relevant STEM training and education.
A $10,000 grant to Lorenzo De Zavala Elementary School supported the purchase of laptops, which will provide students with new learning opportunities involving coding, robotics and virtual experiences. Last July, more than 20 PPG employee volunteers completed a COLORFUL COMMUNITIES project to help revitalize the school’s library and cafetorium through the transformative power of paint and color.
“By providing our local youth with the tools they need to succeed in the sciences, we can help fuel their passions and foster new innovation in the fields of science and technology,” said Okey Maduka, PPG sales manager, architectural coatings, Dallas-Fort Worth.
The Colorful Communities program, PPG’s signature initiative for supporting communities, aims to protect and beautify the neighborhoods where PPG operates around the world. Through the Colorful Communities program, PPG’s committed volunteers contribute their time and PPG paint products to help transform community assets—from revitalizing historic landmarks, to adding brightness to a youth center and converting a bus into a mobile learning experience, according to the company. Since 2015, PPG has completed more than 200 Colorful Communities projects, impacting nearly 5.2 million people in 30 countries.
The grant recipients and funding purposes in Atlanta were:
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta (BBBSMA)—$12,500 to support science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) Truck enrichment activities for children and youth in a one-on-one mentoring program, which includes activities focused on science, technology and engineering
- Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce—$10,000 to support the Workforce Development program, which educates students on local opportunities in manufacturing while encouraging them to master technical skills to pursue a career in the field
- Harvest Rain Academy—$9,300 to support the Pretty Brainy curriculum program, which empowers underserved students through hands-on learning experiences and offers resources for school-aged girls to explore activities leading to careers in STEAM fields
- SoulSpa—$9,000 for an event where more than 600 elementary school children will participate in STREAM activities and interactive exhibits
- YWCA of Greater Atlanta—$10,000 for the Teen Girls in Technology (TGI Tech) program, which inspires middle and high school girls to participate in initiatives focused on hands-on STEAM activities.
“PPG is proud to support local students in their educational experiences in the communities where we live, work and play,” said Marsha Mosley, PPG distribution manager, Fairburn, Georgia. “We are excited to partner with organizations that provide students with real-world skills and foster their interest in pursuing a career in STEM fields.”
PPG invested nearly $60,000 to support educational initiatives and economic development efforts in the Chicago area.
The grant recipients and funding purposes were:
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago (BGCC)—$9,000 for the implementation of BGCC’s do-it-yourself (DIY) STEM programming, which serves approximately 18,000 youth at 23 sites during the school year
- Chicago Urban League—$15,000 toward Project Ready, which is a middle school STEM module and summer camp that aims to inspire youth who are interested in pursuing STEM academics and careers
- Lewis University—$10,000 to support the Girls Create with Technology program for middle school girls. The program addresses the underrepresentation of women in the technical and computer science fields
- Lumity—$15,000 to support Lumity’s Career Readiness program, which serves approximately 875 youth in underserved communities who are at risk of not graduating high school or pursuing a post-secondary college or career path
- Project SYNCERE—$10,000 for the ENpowered program, which is designed to increase students’ interest in, and understanding of, STEM disciplines while creating pathways for continued STEM education
“PPG takes pride in supporting local organizations that share a common interest in the fields of science and technology,” said Justin Williams, PPG regional sales manager, Chicago. “The students in our communities are building the foundation for a successful future through these key programs and opportunities.”