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Rural Community STEM Engagement Grant

Opportunity Goals and Objectives: The next generation of Idaho jobs will require a flexible set of skills that include creativity, communication, collaboration and problem-solving. We can cultivate these skills and increase economic opportunity for our children through an educational approach that centers on discovery, experimentation and design (Making). These are learning processes that can happen not only in advanced science and math classes, but across curricula and for all age groups, setting up youth for success in an interdisciplinary, 21st century workforce.

Brief Description: This grant supports a multi-month project, starting with the implementation of a two-day STEM professional development workshop for K-12 educators, including teachers, librarians, daycare providers and out-of-school program staff.

STATUS: Closed


Open: January 6, 2020
Close: February 3, 2020
Award date: February 24, 2020


This workshop is for rural communities (population ~6,000 and under) whose educators have already discovered the joy of Making and who are looking for meaningful ways to integrate a Making approach into their programs and classrooms. This is an opportunity for your organization to bring educators together and set a course for 21st century learning at the community level. Our Idaho-based facilitation team will inspire you with innovative new tools, cutting-edge approaches to learning, and strategies for developing sustainable programs that foster STEM learning and 21st century skills.

A lead organization will apply for this grant, but must collaborate with other community organizations such as schools, libraries, out-of-school learning organizations, and other educational institutions and obtain their commitment to participate in the entire project.

Due to the unique and comprehensive nature of this project, you are encouraged to contact Jeff or Francesca, the lead facilitators, about the requirements and the overall project. Francesca Bessey: and/or Jeff will be happy to answer your questions, determine if this is a good fit for your community, and guide you through the application process.

Organizations selected for this opportunity will receive the following as part of their award:

$10,000 for the following:

  • $1,500 to support the two-day workshop including costs for food, supplies, copies, marketing etc…
  • $3,000 to purchase new STEM equipment for the lead organization
  • $5,000 to distribute to partner organizations ($1,000/each up to five) that participates in the workshop and who completes a making-based STEM activity at their site (if additional organizations participate, additional $1,000/organization will be provided by STEM AC to Lead Organization)

Curriculum and materials for all workshop modules

Professional facilitation of all workshop modules

Tailored promotional materials including fliers and social media

Pre- and post-workshop documentation including registration and assessment forms

Workshop planning and recruitment support

Facilitation of three (3) digital meetups for participants following the workshop to provide opportunities for extended learning and community building

  • Recruit partner community organizations for participation in project
  • Make all arrangements for 2-day workshop in including location, food, and supplies (with assistance from facilitation team)
  • Attend two-day workshop
  • Complete all pre- and post-workshop surveys and evaluations from STEM AC
  • Attend all digital meetups as scheduled
  • Complete making-based STEM activity at your organization
  • Oversee partner organizations and distribute funds to those who meet requirements
  • Complete final report
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