Verizon Innovative Learning, the communication giant’s signature education initiative, has rebranded and expanded the free program to Verizon Innovative Learning STEM Achievers.
Previously known as two separate programs, Verizon’s new program will work in partnership with the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE). The STEM Achievers program will offer a more inclusive learning environment and provide middle school students in underserved communities. The program will create opportunities for students to discover new problem-solving skills and exposure to STEM careers.
Verizon Innovative Learning STEM Achievers will continue to offer students an engaging hands-on experience to learn through design thinking, 3-D printing, augmented reality, social entrepreneurship, and mentorship. The program’s curriculum, developed by Arizona State University’s Edson Entrepreneurship + Innovation Institute, will center around immersive media, smart solutions, digital product innovations, and artificial intelligence.
The year-round program will also work with 44 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), Hispanic-Serving institutions (HSIs), and community colleges across the nation.
“One of the core tenets of Verizon Innovative Learning STEM Achievers is to expose students to emerging technologies and teach students to think broadly about how technology can make the world a better place,” Alex Servello, director of Corporate Social Responsibility at Verizon, said in a statement. “Since the program launched in 2017, we’ve been able to reach thousands of students, not only through hands-on learning but through mentorships that help to deepen their connection to STEM, as well as build their confidence and leadership skills outside of the classroom.”
Both students and teachers can also take advantage of the Verizon Innovative Learning HQ, a new, free open-access education portal that scales the resources of the tech company’s innovative learning and its approach to integrating technology into the classroom.
The portal will enable any K-12 educator in the country to access Verizon’s innovative learning apps, and tailored lesson plans to empower students to create solutions to problems using technology.
In addition to helping students in underserved communities, Verizon’s initiatives also help small, minority businesses, young men with technology skills training, and students lacking access to technology.