CHEVY CHASE, Md., June 12, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- National 4-H Council is pleased to announce that Lockheed Martin will continue its support of 4‑H Science programs with a three-year, $1.5 million gift.
Through this collaboration, Lockheed Martin's support will expand the 4-H Robotics program by adding new 4-H Robotics clubs throughout the country. This partnership will also provide funds for professional and volunteer development and training around 4-H Robotics and leverage the experience and expertise of Lockheed Martin employees to serve as mentors for 4-H youth.
4-H developed a comprehensive robotics program in 2009 to inspire young people and develop an early interest in robotics engineering and technology. In 2010 and 2011, with the support from Lockheed Martin, National 4-H Council developed and launched the first ever, comprehensive robotics curriculum for youth ages 9 to 18, titled 4-H Robotics: Engineering for Today and Tomorrow. Additionally, through Lockheed Martin's support, since 2011 roughly 1,095 youth are now learning about robotics in 87 newly established 4-H Robotics clubs throughout the country.
Lockheed Martin will also sponsor the 2012, 2013 and 2014 4-H National Youth Science Day (NYSD). As 4-H's premier rallying event, the 2012 4-H NYSD will take place on Oct. 10, 2012, and bring together hundreds of thousands of youth from all across the nation to simultaneously complete the 2012 National Science Experiment: the 4-H Eco-Bot Challenge. Designed and developed by The Ohio State University and Ohio State Extension - one of the nation's land-grant universities within the Cooperative Extension System - the 2012 National Science Experiment will focus on Engineering Robotic Solutions.
"Lockheed Martin's generous and continued support will help strengthen the development and delivery of 4-H's robust science, engineering and technology programming," said Donald T. Floyd, Jr., National 4-H Council President and CEO. "4-H now reaches more than 5 million youth with out-of-school science education, and as a result, is playing a significant role in helping to address the nation's workforce development challenges. We look forward to a lasting partnership with great national impact."
"Lockheed Martin is proud to continue its support of 4-H Science programs," said Emily Simone, Lockheed Martin Director of Global Community Outreach. "STEM education is a national imperative, and programs like 4-H Robotics enable students to learn through fun, interactive and engaging projects. But, the students aren't the only ones who benefit—our engineers also enjoy sharing their profession and expertise with youths in their communities."
For a decade, preeminent youth development scholar, Dr. Richard Lerner, and the team at the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University have been working with faculty at land-grant universities to conduct The 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development. This in-depth, longitudinal study has discovered that the structured learning, encouragement and adult mentoring that young people receive through their participation in 4-H plays a vital role in helping them achieve future life successes. Recent findings show that compared to other youth, 4-H'ers:
- Report better grades, higher levels of academic competence, and an elevated level of engagement at school
- Are nearly two times more likely to plan to go to college
- Are more likely to pursue future courses or a career in science, engineering, or computer technology
The study also finds that girls in 4-H are more than twice as likely to participate in science, engineering, or computer technology programs than their peers.
4-H Science programs are developed and conducted by the 111 land-grant universities and the Cooperative Extension System. To address increased demand for science and technology professionals, 4-H is working to reach a bold goal of engaging one million new young people in science programs by 2013.
4-H is a community of six million young people across America learning leadership, citizenship, and life skills. National 4-H Council is the private sector, non-profit partner of 4-H National Headquarters located at the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) within USDA. 4-H programs are implemented by the 111 land-grant universities and the Cooperative Extension System through their 3,100 local Extension offices across the country. Learn more about 4-H at www.4-h.org or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/4-H.
SOURCE National 4-H Council