Five, four, three, two...TWO? We’re only TWO weeks from Chicago Tech Rocks! Can that even be right? It feels like we just started planning, but at the same time, our excitement level is through the roof. Our opening acts The Locals, The Daytonics and Good Night Criminals are promising some epic performances and we know our internationally-known, indie rock band headliner will not disappoint! But, as we stress each week, while the concerts and Tesla raffle are exciting, the real stars of the show are our beneficiary organizations. So, without further ado, we’d like to introduce everyone to our this week's spotlight organization, Lumity!
Mission for change
Lumity is on a mission to provide teens and young adults in underserved communities with transformational experiences to prepare them for lifelong STEM careers.
The mission statement itself might be a quick read, but it packs an impactful punch. Lumity believes that by providing access to real world experiences and career readiness programs, that students will be better prepared for 21st century jobs that will lead to a sustainable livelihood and career. Through this approach, Lumity strives to see 1 in 4 of its participating students find a STEM career.
Being a Lumity student
Students are enrolled in the Lumity program through their participating high schools and meet on a weekly basis for all four years of high school. The four year program aims to teach and strengthen students’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills, ability to work in a team and effectively collaborate, develop stronger inter/intra personal skills and teach valuable presentation skills.
So, how does Lumity actually achieve these goals? Through their STEM Career Readiness initiative.
Tell me more about STEM Career Readiness
Lumity connects schools and corporate employees through a unique approach that integrates a classroom curriculum with real-world experience and events.
STEM talks: STEM professionals from a variety of industries, and often some of the same neighborhoods as the students, share what inspired and motivated them in both their life and career journey.
Career site visits: Lumity partner with Chicago companies to offer students an interactive, hands-on look at how STEM is applied in business. Students are often getting their first look at the inside of a corporation and can see what it takes to be a member of a team. Employees interact with the students and help inspire the next generation of the workforce.
Real-world projects: Students get hands-on experience with solving problems faced in the workplace, while learning to use common and cutting edge technologies. The projects provide an opportunity for the students to get a start to finish perspective in a real-world setting and a sense of accomplishment when they can see the impact of their work.
Career readiness curriculum: Brain science-based research informs a curriculum designed to help students learn concepts and develop interpersonal skills to become more conscious and aware of their thoughts, emotions and responses in their school, work and personal lives. Students receive coaching and in-the-moment feedback to reward responsible choices and address the challenges they face.
Looking at the numbers
Throughout the years, Lumity's reach within the classroom has exploded. And the 2016/2017 school year is no exception. Take a look at what they're planning :
4: The number of Chicagoland high schools teaching the Lumity curriculum in 2016/2017
2: STEM talks and career site visits this school year
6: Real world projects anticipated during the school year
12: The number of Career & Life Readiness lesson plans that will be implemented
2,000: Students benefiting from the Lumity program this year
If for some reason the impressive numbers above don't offer enough proof that Lumity is doing some incredibly important work, take it from the students and companies themselves. Sharing nothing but the highest praises for the program and participants, it's no secret that Lumity is filling a much needed gap in the STEM education sector.