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Kyrene Traditional Academy Seeks to Empower Girls in STEAM with YWCA Equity Grant

Posted January 2024


Kyrene Traditional Academy (KTA) will soon be expanding its afterschool offerings in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM).  KTA recently received the Equity in STEAM 3.0 grant totaling $2,500 from YWCA Metropolitan Phoenix, Intel and the Salt River Project.


“The YWCA has amazing support for STEM and STEAM, and our focus for this grant is on expanding opportunities for girls and young women, not only for STEAM, but also in leadership, continuing our focus and building on it,” said Dr. Lescher. “We received the grant two years ago and were excited that we could apply again.”


When KTA was awarded the grant in 2022, the funds helped the school to purchase 22 Code and Go Mice, five Sphero mini robots, 3D printers and consumable project materials. This year, the grant will help expand KTA’s STEM Discover Lab, giving students more opportunities to participate


Students will be invited to grade-specific afterschool events where they will engage with teachers and community partners for two hours learning, experimenting and designing solutions to complex issues. The afterschool event hosts groups of students spanning two grade levels. Each group will have between 20 and 25 students, supporting 100 female students.


“Students will learn about and research a topic or activity and then become experts so that they can lead the same activity,” said Dr. Lescher. “This will allow students to take on leadership roles and work as the facilitators of the activities during our school-wide STEM Saturday program.”


Schools from across Arizona may apply for their projects to be funded by the Equity in STEAM Initiative, provided they enable the exploration of the world of STEAM, introduce culturally relevant STEAM activities and grow interested in STEAM-related learning pathways and careers. Each year, up to twenty grants are awarded.