The Panasonic Foundation teams up with Million Girls Moonshot to increase equity in STEM education and inspire the next generation of innovators
The initiative expands growth and development through science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) out-of-school learning opportunities for young girls
NEWARK, NJ – While women make up half the U.S. workforce, only about a quarter currently hold STEM positions, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates. With contribution to society serving as a key principle in its foundation and its commitment to drive change through technology, the Panasonic Foundation announced today it is joining the Million Girls Moonshot (MGM) initiative by the STEM Next Opportunity Fund (STEM Next), and will contribute $1 million dollars over the next three years to reimagine who can be an engineer and inspire career pathways into STEM fields.
“As a materials scientist and engineer, I know the importance of early access and exposure to remove barriers to entry in the STEM field,” said Ainissa Ramirez, Ph.D., author of The Alchemy of Us and board member of the Panasonic Foundation. “By creating connections and building confidence in young girls, we’re also empowering them to reimagine their futures.”
MGM is committed to engaging one million girls across the country in STEM learning opportunities in afterschool and summer programs by 2025. In support of this mission, the Panasonic Foundation is donating Panasonic TOUGHBOOK laptops to multiple MGM out-of-school programs in the broader o area including the Boys and Girls Club of Truckee Meadows, City of Reno Sierra Kids before and after school programs, Nevada Math and Technology Program at the University of Nevada, Reno, and the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension 4H program, near its advanced battery manufacturing operation, Panasonic Energy of North America, in Sparks, Nevada. The partnership will also expand to another region in the country where Panasonic has business that will be announced later this year.
“With the [COVID-19] pandemic having a long-lasting effect on education, it’s critical we work to bridge the gender gap by creating opportunities and pathways for the next generation of engineers, innovators, and creators.” said Alejandra Ceja, Vice President, Office of Social Impact and Inclusion &, Executive Director, Panasonic Foundation. “At Panasonic, we strive to move the world forward and are proud to join the Million Girls Moonshot initiative to advance equity in STEM education, diversify and strengthen the tech talent pipeline, and build a more inclusive workforce.”
“At STEM Next, we understand that bringing together diverse partners across all sectors is essential to achieving our Moonshot and reaching a million more girls,” says Teresa Drew, Deputy Director of STEM Next and MGM lead. “Through this new engagement with Panasonic, we can further support our amazing MGM partners on the ground in Nevada as they inspire young girls in STEM.
On November 8, 2021, National STEM/STEAM Day, eight female engineers from Panasonic volunteered at the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows to lead a group of girls in a hands-on STEM education workshop focused on engineering design.
The Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows is one of the thousands of afterschool and summer program providers engaged with STEM Next through MGM. “Out-of-school learning opportunities are essential for young learners, which is why we are involved with initiatives like MGM that have the ability to engage young girls in STEM in a meaningful way,” says Mike Wurm, President & CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows.
About STEM Next Opportunity Fund
Created in the legacy of the Robert D. Noyce Foundation, the STEM Next Opportunity Fund (STEM Next) is dedicated to bringing high-quality STEM learning to millions of young people and closing the gender gap in STEM careers. As a national leader, strategic guide, policy advocate and investor, STEM Next is bringing about a transformative expansion of high-quality and inclusive STEM learning opportunities. By investing early in the lives of our children, we are transforming their lives and preparing them for the 21st century economy. Learn more at www.StemNext.org. Connect with STEM Next on Twitter and LinkedIn. Learn more about the Million Girls Moonshot at https://milliongirlsmoonshot.org and connect on Twitter and Instagram.
About Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows
The Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows is the leading non-profit youth services agency in northern Nevada. Its mission is to enhance the quality of life for children, ages 0 to 18, in the Truckee Meadows through after-school, summer, and school break programming and services. The Club is committed to creating healthy children, in body and mind, with a sense of competence, usefulness, responsibility, belonging, and influence through diverse programs and community involvement. Founded in 1976, the Club now serves nearly 14,000 children at 30+ locations throughout the Truckee Meadows, Ely, Winnemucca, and Fernley. The Boys & Girls Club strives to provide kids with positive and productive outlets for their energy with programs such as after-school tutoring, character and leadership development, healthy lifestyles, athletics, and art. And while the Club invests more than $3,000 annually into each member's members, memberships cost just $20 per year, providing equal opportunity to all children in the community. Connect with the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows on Facebook, www.facebook.com/PositivePlace, Twitter, www.twitter.com/PositivePlace and Instagram, www.Instagram.com/ThePositivePlace
About the Panasonic Foundation
The Panasonic Foundation is devoted to creating a better life, a better world by increasing educational opportunities for disadvantaged students through strategic philanthropic investments in science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM). Our local and national mission is an extension of our core principles. We are dedicated to supporting efforts that advance educational excellence. Follow the Panasonic Foundation on Instagram @PanasonicFoundation and on Twitter @PanasonicFDN.
About Panasonic Corporation of North America
Newark, NJ-based Panasonic Corporation of North America is committed to creating a better life and a better world by enabling its customers through innovations in Sustainable Energy, Immersive Entertainment, Integrated Supply Chains and Mobility Solutions. The company is the principal North American subsidiary of Osaka, Japan-based Panasonic Corporation. One of Interbrand’s Top 100 Best Global Brands of 2021, Panasonic is a leading technology partner and integrator to businesses, government agencies and consumers across the region. Learn more about Panasonic’s ideas and innovations at http://na.panasonic.com/us/.
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