WASHINGTON, D.C. — Society for Science, one of the nation’s most prominent scientific and educational institutions, today announced the recipients of the 2022 STEM Action Grants Program. A total of $176,000 will be awarded to 45 innovative community-based STEM organizations based in 22 states and Washington, D.C. The program works toward developing an inclusive STEM talent pool by strengthening and improving outcomes for groups that have been historically left behind in STEM education and careers, including Black and Latinx individuals, Native Americans, women and gender-expansive persons, persons with disabilities as well as low-income students from rural and urban areas.
In addition to these awards, four special Presidential Awards totaling $10,000 will be given to four emeriti STEM Action Grantees: Black Girls Dive, Electric Girls, Kul Wicasa Wopasi (Lower Brule) and Safe Alternative Foundation for Education (SAFE); these distinguished awards are in recognition of the growth and exemplary work these nonprofits are doing to make STEM education accessible to all.
With a keen lens on equity, this year’s class of grantees represents one that is fiercely committed to diversity and mobility in STEM — they are ensuring that underserved and marginalized communities have opportunities using a variety of approaches and outreach efforts. For instance, a few organizations this year are dedicated to making STEM accessible to individuals with disabilities. One is creating resources and teaching STEM to visually impaired persons while another is developing devices for amputees, aiming to increase the accessibility of prosthetic devices.
Other grantees this year are designing experiences so students can see STEM in action and explore new career possibilities through hands-on learning. By bringing students aboard a vessel with shark scientists, one group is exposing them to marine and environmental sciences and conservation. Another is focused on raising the next generation of climate leaders who will address the perils of climate change and sea level rise on coastal communities and beyond.
Additionally, a collection of organizations is helping students to become strong communicators. Through arts, radio and digital media production, the goal is to attract students of all backgrounds to science, technology and communications. Students are working with science journalism mentors who are helping them to build strong science communication skills via reading about the latest science research and communicating that research clearly for the public’s understanding. A few other organizations are focused on helping students to build technical knowledge and know-how in audio and podcasting — valuable and transferable skills in a world that is increasingly drawn to these distinct modes of storytelling.