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Verizon on STEM

by Employee ‎03-29-2012 11:33 AM - edited ‎03-29-2012 11:53 AM

stem_education133x200.jpgWe often say that we work to build long-term value for both Verizon and for society. Nowhere is this more evident than in our support for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and our emphasis on helping underserved schools integrate technology into classrooms.

 

Many studies have shown that minorities, women, and low-income students are underrepresented in the scientific and technical disciplines – a “STEM gap” if you will. But the demand for workers skilled in STEM subjects is strong and growing. Did you know that over the past 10 years, STEM jobs grew three times faster than non-STEM jobs? In 2010, the unemployment rate for STEM workers was just 5.3 percent, while for all others it was 10 percent.

 

Verizon needs a workforce with the scientific and technical skills necessary to improve our networks and keep our edge in innovation. We believe that finding and nurturing that innovative talent – wherever it may be – will help bridge the STEM gap, spur technical innovation, and in turn, power growth for the entire economy.

 

One example of our work to nurture minority and women students in scientific and technical careers is a Foundation-funded program in Pennsylvania called “STEM for an Equitable Future.” It fosters learning and enhances effective recruitment, enrollment, retention and graduation of female, low-income, first generation and minority students. By providing academic counseling, research opportunities and mentoring, students develop their skills and — importantly — enhance confidence in their ability to excel in school.

 

As consumers demand more from Verizon's networks and the mobile devices powered by them, we will need thousands of employees with talent, dedication, and a passion for innovation to keep us in the vanguard of technology – employees like Owren Hosier, a principle system performance engineer for Verizon Wireless. Owren has a reputation for being able to design around difficult circumstances. He is responsible for evaluating 3,500 network sites each day to ensure Verizon has enough capacity to serve its customers and he uses statistics extensively to determine what is going to happen on our networks, and where. His background in science and engineering allowed him to refine a custom Cell Inventory Tool that graphically represents the components at each cell site to more efficiently prioritize the deployment of equipment and resources, ensuring that the network runs smoothly.

 

Last year the Verizon Foundation invested $21 million in education initiatives. Stay tuned as we highlight some of the educational programs we’re supporting across the country.

 

For more information on Verizon’s philanthropic work or to apply for a grant, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.

Comments
by seamustim1 on ‎04-09-2012 02:38 PM

In my experience high acheiving, low income kids still have a difficult time obtaining funding for positive learning experiences. Most corporate outreach fouondations only grant money to 501 c organizations. I stated "most", but I have yet to find one that helps individuals. Some of the philantropic organzations like the Optimists, Knight of Columbus, and Rotary International, can help individuals, but the application process has time constraints and is usually for high school seniors applying for college.  We are trying to raise money through Krispy Kreme donut sales, but unless you belong to a group finding a place to sell is difficult, not to mention the upfront cost associated. What if you get stuck with a bunch of unsold donuts? We are still waiting for an OK from the church we attend. Since this isn't a church organization they are hesitant. Any ideas are appreceiated. The following is a letter that I have sent to companies like Monsanto and Exxon.

 

To whom it may concern,

 

I am writing you to request financial assistance for my daughter, Shannon McCarthy, an 8th grade North Kirkwood Middle School student, to attend an academic summer camp, VAMPY, The Summer Camp for Verbally and Mathematically Precocious Youth. Shannon’s MAP test scores qualified her to take advantage of Duke University’s Talent Identification Program and take the ACT test as a 7th grader. Those ACT scores earned an invitation to the Missouri Recognition Ceremony. Along with test scores and principal recommendation Shannon was also a Distinguished Nominee to the Joseph Baldwin Academy for Eminent Young Scholars. Shannon took the ACT again as an 8th grader and her scores qualified her to attend the camp at The Center for Gifted Studies. She will be enrolled in a genetics course provided I can send Shannon to camp. Camp is held from June 24 - July 14, 2012 at The Center for Gifted Studies on the campus of Western Kentucky University.

 

Shannon is the oldest of three children. She has an 11 year old brother, Seamus that has autism. Shannon’s youngest sibling Kate is 9 years old. Shannon’s mother, Linda, is unable to work because of medical issues. She was diagnosed with fibromyalgia five years ago after being hit by a drunk driver for the 2nd time. She had her second cervical fusion over the last two years in January. Unfortunately Linda hasn’t gotten much relief from the most recent surgery. I currently work overnight as an assistant manager at Walgreen’s which is now being phased out. I took a demotion in 2009 so that I could return to school during the day and change my career to nursing. I will receive my nursing degree in 2013. While I still work 40 hrs a week, the decrease in salary has taken its toll on our family’s financial situation and medical bills continue to pile up while we struggle to pay everyday expenses. Fortunately we receive some assistance from the Regional Center of Missouri to help send Seamus to appropriate activities. His autism qualifies him for this assistance, but as gifted young girl funding for Shannon’s needs are hard to find.

 

I understand that if we receive assistance from your group it will not cover the entire cost of the program. We have requested 1/4 of the program cost of $2400 from The Center for Gifted Studies. We hope to have an answer regarding any scholarship awarded by the end of April.  Any financial assistance will be appreciated. I am willing to provide federal tax information so that you may verify financial need. I will also send any information regarding the camp.  Any aid awarded can certainly be paid directly to The Center for Gifted Studies.

 

Shannon is a smart, caring, responsible, and energetic young girl. Besides excelling academically she has been playing the violin for five years and dives for a local dive team. Shannon also volunteers helping special needs kids. I think Shannon has a great deal to offer her peers in addition to what she will receive from the VAMPY experience.

 

http://www.wku.edu/gifted/vampy.php

 

Thank you for your consideration,

 

Richard McCarthy

 

 

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The Responsibility Blog — Learn how Verizon is using communications technology to connect people to the larger resources of the community—education, health care, accessibility and safety—in ways that make lives better. Visit the Verizon Communications Corporate Responsibility Report. We hope you will share your views with us.

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Rose leads Verizon's global corporate responsibility initiatives and philanthropic strategy, which focuses on applying Verizon's technology to improve education, healthcare and energy management.

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James oversees Verizon’s supply chain, vehicle fleet, investment recovery, purchasing and materials management and sustainability initiatives.



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Director of Corporate and Community Responsibility

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Jack promotes digital wellness and online safety. He works with parents, educators, service providers, application developers and industry leaders to foster responsible use of Verizon's mobile and broadband networks.

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