Francis Marion University students who are enrolled in science, technology, engineering and/or math (STEM) education fields will have greater scholarship and internship opportunities thanks to a $75,000 grant from the shareholder-funded Duke Energy Foundation.
First priority will be given to first generation college students, the traditionally disadvantaged and underrepresented groups who qualify for the awards.
The grant will be administered through the newly created Clemson University Center for Workforce Development (CUCWD) as part of a statewide initiative to improve workforce educational capacity in STEM fields. The CUCWD engages universities, technical colleges, K-12 institutions, statewide industries and federal agencies to deliver workforce development tools that have the power to transform the economy of the state.
The rapid progression of South Carolina industry requires fresh opportunities for job growth and economic activity, said FMU President Dr. Fred Carter.
“In order to maximize that potential, it is critical we have graduates prepared to take these jobs,” Carter said. “The scholarship and internship opportunities provided by the Duke Energy Foundation and CUCWD partnership will strengthen the relationships we currently have with industry professionals, educators and students.”
Every dollar we contribute to education is an investment in the future of our state, said Mindy Taylor, Duke Energy district manager in Florence.
“We are proud to support organizations like FMU that engage and excite students about energy, math and science and lay the foundation for our future leaders in these fields,” Taylor said.
Duke Energy Foundation’s funding, combined with previously announced funding (from the U.S. Department of Labor, the Employment and Training Administration, and the National Science Foundation), allows for an expansion of the talent pool to support workforce needs that are consistent with Clemson’s land-grant mission in four key areas:
· Improving education, capacity and access through e-learning and virtual reality simulation tools
· Creating career pathways, college affordability and graduation-rate improvement
· Supporting K-12 STEM education initiatives
· Industry cluster networking through outreach and research
Francis Marion University is one of South Carolina's 13 public, coeducational universities. As one of the state's six comprehensive institutions, FMU prides itself on providing an unrivaled education to enrich and employ.