LBCC receives $65k Oracle STEM Education grant

Linn-Benton Community College received a $65,405 grant in February from the Oregon Community Foundation Oracle STEM Education Fund to expand STEM-CTE activities in the region, including Pipeline, a program of the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce.

The grant is for year one of a three-year potential grant to expand Pipeline, which provides a bridge between K-12 education, post-secondary education and employment in STEM-CTE fields. 

The OCF Oracle grant will be administered through the Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub, a partnership between LBCC, Oregon State University, Linn Benton Lincoln Educational Service District, Linn and Benton K-12 school districts, and industry and community partners such as the Albany Chamber of Commerce’s Pipeline Program and the Boys and Girls Clubs. 

Approved by the Oregon Department of Education in December 2017, the Mid-Valley Hub joins a statewide network of hubs established to improve awareness of CTE and STEM opportunities. 

The Oregon Community Foundation plans to invest $10 million over the next few years through a number of strategies to advance CTE-STEM education for girls, low-income youth, youth of color and/or rural youth around the state in alignment with the priorities of Oregon’s STEM Education Plan. 

OCF funding will help the Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub reach more students in more communities, in lower grade levels, and expand programming into more areas of study. 

 “LBCC and our partners are constantly looking for ways to spark interest in learning that creates pathways to jobs that benefit our entire community," said Nicole Ballinger, LBCC grants manager and STEM-CTE Hub director. "This grant gives us the ability to give that spark of learning to kids who may otherwise have no idea they have an aptitude for science and technology -- especially young girls and students of color.”  

Funding will offset transportation costs to STEM-CTE activities for rural students and the costs of “Pipeline” STEM-CTE programs like manufacturing and healthcare events, and will support LBCC student ambassadors who will take hands-on activities into classrooms in elementary and middle schools to bring awareness of STEM-CTE activities and careers.

Funds will also improve outreach to Hispanic communities that the Hub will serve, including translation services and programming for entire families.

The mission of Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub is to promote regional economic vitality. The MV STEM-CTE Hub will ensure that all children, throughout their education, understand the opportunities available to them in STEM/CTE and acquire the tools needed to pursue living wage jobs.


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