SME PRIME is now preparing for the future in a transformational way. The State of Michigan’s commitment to providing tailored curriculum that gives students hands-on training on modern, industry-standard equipment underscores the interest in and desire to strengthen the educational pursuits of young people.
The number of SME PRIME high schools is set to double after the SME Education Foundation received a $6 million donation from the State of Michigan’s approved Education Budget. The legislation was crafted with bipartisan support from the Michigan Legislature, including Foundation board member and state representative Joe Tate (D-Detroit).
The Foundation's first quarter saw a 95% increase in scholarship applications with female student applications doubling, minority student applications nearly tripling, and the minority female participation rate increased by a factor of four. Scholarships are central to our mission to inspire, prepare and support young people in their pursuit of manufacturing and engineering education and training.
The SME Education Foundation's renewed and focused commitment to a diversity, equity and inclusion strategy is designed to fully integrate diversity and equity opportunities in every program, effort and initiative undertaken by the Foundation. The Foundation created and established a new Irving P. McPhail Scholarship Fund and will begin focusing its growth efforts on the nation’s Title I schools.
A newly established scholarship fund for students in underrepresented communities is a crucial component of the SME Education Foundation’s diversity, equity and inclusion strategy, designed to fully integrate diversity and equity opportunities in every program, effort and initiative undertaken by the foundation over the next five years.
Valerie Freeman, a manufacturing and robotics pathway teacher at Park High School, will join the SME Education Foundation Board of Directors in 2021. Park High School in Racine Unified School District joined the SME PRIME school network in 2017. Freeman was instrumental in utilizing SME PRIME to install new curriculum, training to teach students important skills like how to program a robotic arm and remodeling the classroom for a more effective learning environment.