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Four-year grant funding from Cummings Foundation to promote science literacy for underserved students

BioTeach Students in Cambridge Summer Training Program in collaboration with LEAH Knox Scholars and LabCentral.

July 25, 2022 (Cambridge, MA) – The Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation (MassBioEd) is one of 140 local nonprofits to receive grants through Cummings Foundations’ $25Million Grant Program. The Cambridge based organization was chosen from a total of 580 applicants during a competitive review process. It will receive $100,000 over the next four years.

MassBioEd works to build a sustainable life sciences workforce in the region through educational programs that engage and excite teachers, inspire and propel students, and illuminate the pathway from the classroom to careers with a focus on expansion, opportunity, and diversity.

“The excitement of authentic science, its relationship to industry research and jobs, and the chance to build on learning from earlier years is missing from most middle and high school classes. Through BioTeach we provide teachers with cutting edge tools and the support to use them with their students, lab supplies and equipment, and access to the myriad of scientists in our community. Our goal for the program is for students to begin to see themselves in a career in science and what they, as scientists can achieve. Support from Cummings Foundation makes this program possible.”

Sunny Schwartz, MassBioEd Chief Executive Officer

The award will support MassBioEd’s BioTeach program that engages, trains, and supports teachers and schools as they educate the next generation of science leaders. Through hands-on labs and inquiry-based learning, students develop crucial problem-solving and analytical skills. Focusing on high-needs and underserved schools, the possibilities in the life sciences are introduced to students at an early age, allowing ALL students the opportunity to see themselves in life sciences careers. BioTeach works to deepen the ability of teachers to engage students more fully through workshops, mentoring, cutting-edge curricula and authentic science activities. The student experience is enhanced by integrated college and career exploration activities where students interact with faculty at universities and employees at life science companies.

 The Cummings $25 Million Grant Program supports Massachusetts non-profits that are based in, and primarily serve Middlesex, Essex and Suffolk counties. Through this place-based initiative Cummings Foundation aims to give back in the areas where it owns commercial propriety.  Its buildings are all managed, at no cost to the Foundation, by its affiliate, Cummings Properties. This Woburn-based commercial real estate firm leases and manages 11 million square feet of debt-free space, the majority of which exclusively benefits the Foundation.

“We are so fortunate in greater Boston to have such effective nonprofits, plus a wealth of talented dedicated professionals and volunteers to run them,” said Cummings Foundation executive director Joyce Vyriotes. “We are indebted to them for the work they do each day to provide for based needs, break down barriers to education and health resources, and work toward a more equitable society.”

This year’s grant recipients represent a wide variety of causes, including food insecurity, immigrant and refugee services, social justice, education and mental health services. The nonprofits are spread across 45 different cities and towns. Cummings Foundation has now awarded more than $375 million to greater Boston nonprofits.

To learn more about MassBioEd visit https://www.massbioed.org/.

To learn more about Cummings Foundation and see the complete list of grant winners visit: www.CummngsFoundation.org

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About MassBioEd Foundation

The MassBioEd Foundation (MassBioEd) is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit organization. Its mission is to build a sustainable life sciences workforce in the region through educational programs that engage and excite teachers, inspire and propel students, and illuminate the pathway from the classroom to careers with a focus on expansion, opportunity, and diversity.

About Cummings Foundation

Woburn-based Cummings Foundation, Inc. was established in 1986 by Joyce and Bill Cummings and has grown to be one of the largest private foundations in New England.  The Foundation directly operates its own charitable subsidiaries, including New Horizons retirement communities, in Marlborough and Woburn, and Cummings Health Sciences, LLC.

MassBioEd Media Contact:

Name: Megan Fontes
Email: megan.fontes@massbioed.org; Phone: (617) 674-5137