The University of Texas-Pan American has received $15,000 as part of the Innovation Generation grant program from the Motorola Solutions Foundation, the charitable arm of Motorola Solutions, Inc. The grant will support Student Leadership Day during the University's annual Hispanic Engineering Science and Technology Week (HESTEC), scheduled this year on Sept. 24-29.
Approximately 800 eighth grade students from the Region One Education Service Center's GEAR UP program will participate in workshops and hands-on activities and hear from inspiring leaders during the day that promotes their excitement and interest in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). HESTEC's Student Leadership Day will be Sept. 25.
"UTPA's HESTEC program is grateful for the support the Motorola Solutions Foundation provides for students of the Rio Grande Valley and for helping the University expose them to STEM workshops, exhibits and other educational engagements," said Veronica Gonzales, vice president for University Advancement at UT Pan American.
Since 2007, the Innovation Generation grant program has provided $30 million in support of STEM through funds awarded to more than 300 school, museum and nonprofit programs across the United States that foster and support STEM initiatives for teachers and U.S. preschool through university students - especially girls and underrepresented minorities.
Motorola Solutions Foundation supported Student Leadership Day at last year's HESTEC and the corporation's McAllen Distribution Center has been involved over the years in HESTEC, now in its 11th year.
HESTEC was created to address the critical shortage of scientists and engineers in the United States. Since its inception, the weeklong program has become a national model for promoting STEM careers among predominantly Hispanic South Texas students, who are particularly underrepresented in the STEM fields.
In a press release announcing the grant recipients, Motorola Solutions Foundation Director Matt Blakely said he is amazed by the ground-breaking work the grant recipients accomplish through the Innovation Generation grants.
"These grantees are playing an active role in developing the future of STEM education for our country," he said. Innovation Generation is a part of Motorola Solutions' larger commitment to engaging youth in STEM education.
Beyond funding, UTPA will receive ongoing support from Motorola Solutions employee volunteers, who will act as mentors, tutors and experts in STEM careers.