East Hawaii News

Two Big Island Schools Among 12 to Receive STEM Funding

March 14, 2016, 12:26 PM HST
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pixabay STEMTwo Big Island schools are among 12 across the state to receive funding as part of a multi-year $2.2 million grant program that will aim to expand science, math, engineering, and technology education to prepare students for college and their future careers.

The initiative, which is a partnership with Project Lead The Way and USA Funds, was announced in January by Governor David Ige. The partnership hopes to build up the state’s innovation economy and workforce.

Honoka’a High School and Kea’au High School are the two Big Island PLTW program participants on the island.

Each school will be enabled to implement PLTW programs in computer science, engineering, and biomedical science pathways.

Under the grant funds, schools can cover program fees, teacher training at the University of Hawai’i – West Oahu, and classroom equipment and supplies.


“We are extremely grateful to USA Funds for making it possible for schools in Hawai’i to implement PLTW’s programs,” said Rex Bolinger, senior vice president and chief development officer. “PLTW programs empower students to develop the knowledge and transportable skills they need to thrive in our advancing, high-tech economy.”


It is projected that Hawai’i will need 16,000 more STEM-skilled workers by 2017, however, the state ranks 47th in the number of STEM-related degrees awarded per 100,000 residents.

“We look forward to thousands of additional students being prepared for high-paying jobs in high-demand STEM fields in Hawai’i’s growing innovation economy,” said Carol D’Amico, USA Funds executive vice president of National Engagement and Philanthropy. “USA Funds is delighted to partner with Project Lead The Way, the nation’s leader in preparing students for STEM careers, to expand STEM education and employment while advancing economic development in Hawai’i.”

A second round of grant requests will be opened in the Fall.


Aiea High School, Oahu; Island Pacific Academy, Oahu; James Campbell High School, Oahu;  Kalaheo High School, Oahu; Kalani High School, Oahu; Kapolei High School, Oahu; Lanai High and Elementary School, Lanai; Maui Preparatory Academy, Maui; Mililani High School, Oahu; and Nanakuli High and Intermediate, Oahu were also named funding recipients.

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