Thirty Meter Telescope Completes $1M Donation to THINK Fund

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THINK Fund courtesy image.

The Thirty Meter Telescope recently made the second half of its $1 million annual payment to the THINK Fund, supporting educational opportunities for Hawai‘i Island students and teachers.

Administered by the Hawai‘i Community Foundation and Pauahi Foundation, the THINK Fund launched in October 2014.

TMT has awarded grants and scholarships to Hawai‘i Island schools and nonprofit organizations that thrive in those critical areas of science, technology, engineering and math.


The THINK Fund—short for The Hawaii Island New Knowledge—is making a big difference in the lives of Hawai‘i Island students and teachers through scholarships, classroom projects, an endowment and grants, the TMT press release stated.

With the latest payment, TMT has distributed $3.5 million: $2.5 million to THINK at HCF and $1 million to the Pauahi Foundation.

Nearly 10 years ago, the TMT tasked a group of Hawai‘i Island leaders to determine how best to use $1 million a year for STEM education. After meeting for two years, the group fleshed out what is now the THINK Fund and enlisted the Hawaii Community Foundation and the Pauahi Foundation to finalize the fund’s details.


“After listening to the community and hearing their concerns about future jobs on Maunakea, we launched the THINK Fund to help prepare our children for science and technology jobs,” said TMT International Observatory Executive Director Ed Stone. “Through this initiative, we are providing educational opportunities for Hawai‘i’s students, both now and for future generations.”

The Thirty Meter Telescope’s $1 million annual contribution is distributed through the THINK Fund at Hawaii Community Foundation ($750,000) for grants, scholarships and endowment and the THINK Fund at Pauahi Foundation ($250,000) for scholarships.

For more information about the TMT project, visit


About TMT

The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) Project has been developed as collaboration among Caltech, the University of California (UC), the Association of Canadian Universities for Research in Astronomy (ACURA), and the national institutes of Japan, China, and India with the goal to design, develop, construct, and operate a thirty-meter class telescope and observatory on Maunakea in cooperation with the University of Hawaii (TMT Project). The TMT International Observatory LLC (TIO), a non-profit organization, was established in May 2014 to carry out the construction and operation phases of the TMT Project. The Members of TIO are Caltech, UC, the National Institutes of Natural Sciences of Japan, the National Astronomical Observatories of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Department of Science and Technology of India, and the National Research Council (Canada); the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) is a TIO Associate. Major funding has been provided by the Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation.

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