49ers Win The ESPN Humanitarian Award

Posted July 18th, 2017

This last week, the 49ers Team’s humanitarian projects, including the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute, were recognized by ESPN.

“The 49ers were recognized as ESPN’s Sports Humanitarian Team of the Year during an awards ceremony Tuesday evening in Los Angeles.

Co-chair Dr. John York accepted the honor on behalf of the organization. Safety Eric Reid, who is a regular participant in the organization’s community programs and events, was among the group that represented the 49ers for the announcement.

“Every Sunday, the 49ers take the field to win. The other 349 days of the year, we want to be the best football team and the best community citizens,” York said. “Through the 49ers Foundation’s efforts to keep kids ‘Safe, On Track, and In School,’ we inspire Bay Area children to succeed in life using sports as a pathway.” […] Among the organization’s off-the-field accomplishments:

  • The 49ers’ STEM Leadership Institute is a six-year curriculum that begins in 7th grade, continues through high school, and seeks to prepare students with high academic potential in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics). During the 2016-2017 school year, over 40,000 hours of education have been provided, including integrated and open lab hours, tutoring, and enrichment events. Of the 60 students in the 2020 class, 50% have 4.0 GPAs and the average GPA is 3.81.”

For the full story, check out the NBC Bay Area Sports page.

To watch highlights of the awards and a video featuring SLI students, tune in to ESPN on July 25th at 4pm PT.

Video Featuring Adam Savage's Visit to 49ers SLI Released

Posted June 6th, 2017

The 49ers STEM Leadership Institute was featured in an article on Benzinga.com, talking about Adam Savage’s recent video series:

Renowned digital designer and maker Adam Savage’s website, Tested.com, debuts videos shot at two innovative spaces in the California Bay Area; a high school fab lab and a children’s hospital makerspace. The Fab Foundation and Chevron sponsored the recent visits. […]

At the Santa Clara High School Fab Lab, he saw tangible, usable high-tech solutions the students are creating from equipment in the lab, such as vinyl cutters, milling machines and saws.

They were especially excited to show off prototypes for a football tee prototype for a design challenge provided by the San Francisco 49ers. Former NFL player and Super Bowl champion with the San Francisco 49ers, Jesse Sapolu participated. “What a fun way to make cutting-edge technology relevant for young people,” he said.

Olympic gold medalist, former U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team player and Bay Area native, Brandi Chastain, also attended the tour and demonstration. “Having this incredible, hands-on experience in high school will help fuel their futures,” she said.

The young innovators attend the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute, created in partnership with the San Francisco 49ers, the Silicon Valley Education Foundation and the Santa Clara Unified School District. It is a six-year program that prepares students with high academic potential for college and opportunities in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math).

The above video featuring 49ers SLI was posted this week on Adam Savage’s site, Tested.com, with the following description:

Alongside Jesse Sapolu, retired center/guard for the San Francisco 49ers, and Brandi Chastain, Olympic and World Cup soccer champion, Adam works with students at the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute who are designing and building a tee that will hold a football in windy conditions. After four-time Superbowl champion Jesse lends his expertise and Brandi tests the tees with her killer kick, see which one was voted most likely to succeed! (This series and tour is made possible by The Fab Foundation and Chevron.)

Article About MakerFaire Features 49ers SLI Students

Posted June 6th, 2017

The article in the Santa Clara Weekly, titled “Santa Clara Techies and Tinkerers Convene at the Twelfth Annual Bay Area Maker Faire,” features a brief interview with a couple SLI middle school students:

…Santa Clara students at the Faire included Cabrillo Middle School eighth graders Samhitha Hebbale and Lekhana Vankayala, who presented their project on crystallization. They are part of a competitive 6-year program known as the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute that, according to program director Jennifer Lee, receives over a hundred applications each year for 60 spots. Students enroll in the seventh grade and commit to over 300 extra hours of instruction–before and after regular school hours, weekends and summers–focused on STEM-skills and leadership development. They also get an inside look at what an actual STEM job entails.

“We get to meet people from different companies and they describe what they do in their jobs,” Habbale explained. Though the 13-year-old admitted that she didn’t know specifically what she’d like to do in the future, she was certain about one thing. “I’m going to use what I learned here to tackle problems in the real world to improve lives,” she said.

Vankayala appreciated the hands-on experience. “I used to be very shy,” the 14-year-old said, “But this program taught me how to work hard and be competitive–and be nice and cooperative at the same time.”

For the full article, visit The Santa Clara Weekly website.

Students volunteer at Beyond Innovation, hosted by Beyond Sport, the 49ers Foundation, and Chevron

Posted May 11th, 2017

This week SLI Students volunteered at Beyond Innovation, a STEM event hosted by Beyond Sport, 49ers Foundation, and Chevron. The event focused on potential STEM education innovations, with the goal of filling the growing demand for STEM skills across several industries.

“On May 9, over 200 leaders in business, sport, development and tech convened at Beyond Innovation at the Levi’s Stadium to help shape the agenda for the first-ever coalition on sport’s role in STEM education.

The future of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education took a crucial step forward with the launch of the Sport and STEM Alliance. The Sport and STEM Alliance is a coalition of like-minded, leading global organizations driving innovation in STEM education through sports.

Global influencers and decision makers from government, business and sports convened to hear from the likes of Pixar, EverFi, US 2020, Chelsea Football Club Foundation and HP, and were challenged to explore the opportunity for sports to be part of the solution to the very real challenge of preventing the predicted shortfall of 85million skilled jobs in the global economy by 2020.

The world needs a workforce of skilled STEM innovators to address not only the most pressing global challenges of the coming century: food shortages, exponential increases in non-communicable diseases, climate change, energy shortages, and more, but also for governments to drive their economic prosperity.

In the next decade, 80% of jobs will require STEM skills; responsible, leading, organisations know that their future workforce – and subsequent returns – will rely on the next generation being inspired to engage in STEM education from a young age. STEM jobs are growing at 1.7 times the rate of non-STEM jobs, and the U.S. is not producing enough candidates to fill them. Only 16% of high school seniors are interested in pursuing STEM careers, according to the Department of Education.

Since 2009, Beyond Sport, the global force for sustainable change through sport, has taken a broad view of what sport can do for society. Recognizing the pressing need for new approaches to STEM education, Beyond Sport came together with the49ers Foundation and Chevron to host Beyond Innovation, the first-ever event that explored how sports can be leveraged as a tool to improve, empower and create new approaches to STEM education.

Joanne Pasternack, Vice President & Executive Director, 49ers Foundation commented about hosting the event and on the Alliance, “To have the home of the 49ers as the backdrop for Beyond Innovation’s second-ever convening was special for the 49ers Foundation, which has worked for years to introduce innovative approaches to STEM education through efforts like the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute. The Sport and STEM Alliance will be a force for change as we look for ways to better prepare students for STEM-based careers and the 49ers Foundation is honored to be considered a founding member alongside Beyond Sport, Chevron and Verizon.” […]

The outcomes of the event shaped the mission and objectives of the Sport and STEM Alliance, which will take action on key challenges in STEM education by sharing best practice, commissioning research, and widening the network and stakeholders in sport.”

For the full article, visit Beyond Sport’s webpage

For more information about the event, visit the 49ers Foundation webpage.

“In the next decade, 80% of jobs will require STEM skills; responsible, leading, organisations know that their future workforce – and subsequent returns – will rely on the next generation being inspired to engage in STEM education from a young age.”

One of 49ers STEM Leadership Institute's partners, SVEF, Ranked Among Nation's Top Education Innovation Clusters

Posted April 10th, 2017

Silicon Valley Education Foundation (SV[e]F) ranks among the nation’s top ten Education Innovation Clusters, according to an op-ed article written by Baltimore EdTech’s Frank Bonsai III.

“…the March rendition of the Baltimore EdTech meetup was fortunate to have Katrina Stevens speak on the subject of education innovation clusters (#edclusters). Katrina is a former Deputy Director of the US Department of Education’s Office of Educational Technology and an expert on education, education innovation, and how technology and ecosystems or clusters apply to the same. In her two year stint at the USDOE, she became immersed in the nascent but growing concept of education innovation clusters, #edclusters. Katrina and the team led by former Director Joseph South were instrumental in furthering the work begun by Digital Promise alongside a robust body of adjacent work.

According to Digital Promise, education innovation clusters are “local communities of practice that bring together educators, entrepreneurs, funders, researchers, and other community stakeholders to design, implement, iterate on, and disseminate breakthrough learning practices and tools.” In simpler terms, clusters represent the places, people, processes, and pedagogies where innovative teaching, learning, and leading can more easily occur.

Why Education Innovation Clusters?

As the renowned economist, researcher, author, advisor, speaker and teacher, HBS professor Michael Porter, imparts, “clusters disproportionately foster productivity, innovation, and entrepreneurial activity in their regions.” In other words, the ecosystem density and quality of domains are critical […]

U.S. Top Ten Education Clusters — and Counting

iZone NYC— New York, New York

Remake Learning (+ Sprout Fund) — Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

LEAP Innovations — Chicago, Illinois

Eduvate RI (+ Highlander Institute) — Rhode Island

MAPLE (+ LearnLaunch) — Boston, Massachusetts

Silicon Valley Education Foundation— Northern California

Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative— Kentucky

Alignment Nashville — Nashville, Tennessee

Mobile Technology Learning Center, U San Diego — Southern California

Community Share — Tucson, Arizona”

For the full article, check out the publication on LinkedIn or Baltimore EdTech website.

SLI Students Speak at 49ers Foundation's Winter Fest 2017

Posted April 5th, 2017

Last month, two 49ers STEM Leadership Institute (SLI) students had the opportunity to speak at the 49ers Foundation’s 17th annual Winter Fest. They spoke about their experiences in the SLI program; learning the design thinking process; working with state of the art tools; developing their soft skills; and collaborating with fellow classmates.

“The 49ers Foundation annual Winter Fest event at the Resort at Squaw Creek continues to expand and shatter records, this year raising over $2 million for the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute. The weekend entails a series of fun family festivities, interacting with 49ers players, coaches, ownership and Olympians, wine tasting from renowned wineries, as well as silent and live auctions and live entertainment.” (More information, photos, and video on the 49ers foundation website)

SLI Students Speak at 49ers Foundation's Winter Fest 2017

Posted April 5th, 2017

Last month, two 49ers STEM Leadership Institute (SLI) students had the opportunity to speak at the 49ers Foundation’s 17th annual Winter Fest. They spoke about their experiences in the SLI program; learning the design thinking process; working with state of the art tools; developing their soft skills; and collaborating with fellow classmates.

“The 49ers Foundation annual Winter Fest event at the Resort at Squaw Creek continues to expand and shatter records, this year raising over $2 million for the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute. The weekend entails a series of fun family festivities, interacting with 49ers players, coaches, ownership and Olympians, wine tasting from renowned wineries, as well as silent and live auctions and live entertainment.” (More information, photos, and video on the 49ers foundation website)

49ers STEM Leadership Institute is proudly supported by

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