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Hillsboro School District, Adelante Chicas Awarded $250,000 Intel Foundation Grant

“El Camino” grant will fund hands-on experiences for girls in grades 5-8 to foster interest in STEM-related career fields

March 27, 2019, Hillsboro, OR – The Hillsboro School District (HSD) and the Chicas Youth Development Programs (Chicas) of Adelante Mujeres are pleased to announce that their proposal, “El Camino,” was awarded $250,000 by the Intel Foundation through its She Will Connect U.S. grant program.

Translating to “the pathway,” El Camino has three main components:

  1. Adelante Chicas STEM Clubs ($59,000). In a unique partnership between HSD, Chicas, and the City of Hillsboro’s Water Department, students involved in Adelante Chicas after-school sessions will get to participate in a special program in the spring or fall of 2019. This program involves learning about the life cycle of water and the processes the City uses for making this important resource available to the public in a safe and efficient manner. Students will test water purity and learn about the importance of water conservation. They will also evaluate water usage in their own schools and provide recommendations for reducing consumption. Students will also be invited to participate in the Chicas Summer STEAM Camp, where they will be led by high school students in exploratory STEM learning activities. More than 300 students will participate in the after-school and summer programming.
  2. Middle School Instructional Units ($90,000). Paxton/Patterson is a premier provider of STEM curriculum, with pre-designed units focusing on a variety of disciplines, such as Alternative Energy, Pneumatics, Robotics, Structural Engineering, and more. Units will be purchased and put into use at all four HSD middle schools to be used by staff within the instructional day.
  3. STEM After-School Opportunities ($100,000). During the 2019-20 school year, HSD will offer more opportunities for girls in grades 5-8 to participate in after-school STEM learning programs, such as Robotics, STEM Career Exposure, Coding, Computer Sciences, Natural Sciences, Health Sciences, Engineering, and Design. Programming will differ by building, but will be available to all elementary and middle schools.

Piloted in Arizona in 2017-18 with a $1 million investment, the She Will Connect U.S. program aims to expose middle school girls to STEM disciplines and inspire them to consider STEM career fields, as women remain underrepresented in those fields. After seeing measurable success from the pilot, the program was expanded for 2019-20 with $1.25 million in grants available to collaborating organizations in California, Texas, Oregon, and Washington.

The grant awarded to HSD and Chicas was one of just eleven total grants, three of which benefit students in Oregon.

“We want to help inspire young people and expand access to opportunities that will help them succeed using the power of technology,” explains Gabriela González, Deputy Director of the Intel Foundation. “Initiatives such as She will Connect U.S. open doors for young women to explore educational and career paths that may have been unknown or felt out of reach.”

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Social media: #SheWillConnect; @WeAreIntel, @IntelPolicy, @IntelNews