MassRobotics, a global group of non-profit engineers, rocket scientists and entrepreneurs, has received a grant through the Cummings Foundation's $25 Million Grant Program. The non-profit will use the fund to help young women find a direct pathway to STEM careers, with a particular focus on Black and Latinx women and robotic and artificial intelligence careers.
MassRobotics was chosen from 580 applicants to receive the grant, and will receive the money in three instalments, totalling US$100,000.
"The current STEM workforce in Massachusetts is suffering from a lack of diversity, especially women of colour," said Khalif Mitchell, MassRobotics STEM programme manager. "MassRobotics is honoured to receive a Cummings Foundation grant that will help set women of colour up for success in the technology industry, driving a more diverse workforce to pursue these disciplines for their professional careers."
What is MassRobotics' overall aim?
MassRobotics STEM education aims to bridge the gap between the robotics community and the next generation of innovators, by providing resources such as workshops and tours. To achieve this goal, the non-profit launched a number of programmes in 2020, including the MassRobotics Jumpstart Fellowship Programme, aiming to promote diverse opportunities to school girls.
The programme educates girls about various career opportunities within the robotics industry, while exposing them to networking opportunities and technical skills. Girls also have the chance to join the programme’s mentorship team.
“We are so fortunate in greater Boston to have such effective non-profits, plus a wealth of talented, dedicated professionals and volunteers to run them,” said Joyce Vyriotes, executive director of the Cummings Foundation. “We are indebted to them for the work they do each day to provide for basic needs, break down barriers to education and work toward a more equitable society.”
What is the Cummings Foundation?
With an aim to build power charities, the Cummings Foundation is a place-based philanthropic initiative, which has awarded more than US$375 million in grants to Greater Boston non-profits alone, concentrating on the Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties.
The foundation focused on improving the lives of community members, through implementing healthcare, human services, social justice and education programmes.