Delaware State University has received a $75,000 grant from the American Honda Foundation to create the Explorer’s Club program for the 2012-2013 academic year.
The Explorer’s Club involves two organizations namely, DSU and the Boys & Girls Club, combining resources, to provide an incredible after school and summer learning experience for students attending elementary and middle schools in the Capital School District in Kent County, Delaware through the newly created Explorer’s Club program. Through a partnership, the Boys & Girls Club maintains a site based on the main campus of DSU in Dover, Delaware.
The Explorer’s Club is a project-based, STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) directed, and evidence based program that is specifically designed to increase math and science skills. The program will be administered by Dr. Ana-Rita Mayol, director of Special Programs, College of Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Technology, and Dr. Nirmaljit Rathee, assistant professor, College of Education, Health and Public Policy.
The target population consists of youth, ages 6-12, who are enrolled in the Boys & Girls satellite site on the DSU main campus in Dover, Del. The target population consists of students who have scored below standard in Mathematics and Science in the DSTP test. The ethnicity of the students includes 94% African American and six percent of other ethnic groups. The intended impact of the program is to achieve academic improvement, school connectedness and to assist students to become productive adults.
The DSU Explorer’s Club program will target elementary age students in grades K-7 at schools in the Capital School District. The feeder schools for the program are East Dover Elementary, South Dover Elementary, Fairview Elementary, Booker T. Washington Elementary, William Henry Middle School, and Central Middle School in Dover, Delaware.
There is currently no STEM related after school program being provided to the students attending these schools and there is a need for quality after-school programming.
Providing a summer and after school camp for STEM enrichment is an opportunity to assure student growth and retention in the areas of science and math through the months they are out of school. Structured STEM programming will be housed in the DSU Boys & Girls Club site. At the foundation of the Explorer’s Club program is the curriculum, created by DSU professors. The project-based learning curriculum promotes hands-on, relevant activities and experiences. In addition, the curriculum emphasizes higher order thinking skills, which deepens the students understanding of the lesson.
The program will occur at the Boys and Girls site on the DSU campus after school and will be held twice weekly for two semesters. In addition, summer activities will occur twice weekly for a period of six weeks
Established in 1984, the American Honda Foundation (AHF) makes grants to non-profit organizations that benefit the people of the United States in the areas of youth and scientific education, with a specific focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects in addition to the environment. AHF engages in grant making that reflects the basic tenets, beliefs and philosophies of Honda companies, which are characterized by the following qualities: imaginative, creative, youthful, forward-thinking, scientific, humanistic and innovative. Since its inception, more than $29 million have been awarded to organizations collectively serving approximately 115 million people in every state in the U.S. For more information please visit http://www.foundation.honda.com .