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DOD gives Sweetwater district $8.5M grant for STEM programs

Fleet Week San Diego kicked off Thursday with a ceremony announcing an $8.5 million grant from the Department of Defense to students studying science, technology, engineering and math in the Sweetwater Union High School District.

The event took place at the Broadway Pier downtown amid a backdrop of military service members and tanks, where several local and regional delegates in attendance, including state Assemblywoman Shirley Weber and Chula Vista Mayor Mary Casillas Salas.

The grant is part of a partnership between the DOD and the National Science and Math Initiative.

This year, 10 high schools in the Sweetwater Union High School District will benefit from the funding. Of the 21,995 students enrolled in the 10 high schools, roughly 2,100 of them are part of military families.

“In the Navy we work in the depths of the ocean to the limits of space and everywhere in between,” said Naval Rear Adm. Carl Chebi. “Science, technology, engineering and math are all vital components to the work that we do and critical to our continued success.”

Gregg Fleisher, president of the National Math and Science Initiative, said the partnership provides STEM programs for military children who see as many as nine school transitions during their education careers.

Launched in 2007, the National Math and Science Initiative strives to increase student achievement in math, science and English courses through programs that involve local partners.

The program has been established in 217 military-connected high schools across 31 states in all four military branches.


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