Ford Donates $250K to NACME for STEM Program
Ford Motor Company on Monday announced a donation of $250,000 to the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering. The donation establishes the Detroit Area Bridge Scholars Program, which will help underserved and underrepresented students pursue careers in the STEM fields.
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Bridge Scholars Program expands STEM access
Through the Detroit Area Bridge Scholars Program, Ford and NACME look to remove obstacles for students interested in computer science and engineering. The three-year program will see NACME recruiting talent in Metro Detroit and leveraging its ongoing partnership with the University of Michigan to empower students.
Among the roadblocks facing underrepresented students looking to further their STEM education is a lack of access to mentorship, preparation, and funding. Thanks to Ford’s donation, U-M will provide mentorship and scholarship to up to 60 students entering the 11th grade, continuing to support them into their freshman year of college. Students engaged in the program will also have the chance to intern with Ford.
Participants in the Detroit Area Bridge Scholars Program will pair up with mentors from Ford, NACME, or U-M, meeting on a bi-monthly basis. The program will also include bi-monthly seminars focused on various aspects of preparing for college, including testing resources, financial aid, and the application process.
Ford Chief Technology Officer Ken Washington says that the number of potential candidates who miss the chance to move forward in their education each year as result of a lack of access “is simply unacceptable.” The Detroit Area Bridge Scholars Program looks to mitigate those losses by creating a clearer path for students in need.
“Ford is committed to building bridges so that people from all walks of life have the chance to be successful in STEM — and make a difference at places like Ford by changing the way we move.”
Ford’s focus on expanding STEM access is an ongoing one. This year, the Ford Research and Innovation Center expanded the 2021 STEM Signature Program to ensure further reach into underserved and underrepresented communities.