Chuck Lorre Family Foundation and 'Young Sheldon' team launch public school STEM initiative
The purpose is to foster excitement for learning in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), specifically in support of the nation's public schools.
Continuing its commitment to fund innovative efforts in STEM education, The Chuck Lorre Family Foundation (TCLFF) today announced the creation of a new grant program — The Young Sheldon STEM Initiative — inspired by the hit comedy series 'Young Sheldon'. The program was created to foster excitement for learning in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), specifically in support of our nation’s public schools, teachers and students.
'Young Sheldon' executive producer/TCLFF founder, Chuck Lorre, enrolled fellow executive producers Steven Molaro and Jim Parsons, Warner Bros. Television Group and CBS to co-fund two-year educational grants totaling more than $600,000.00 which will be awarded to 19 select elementary, middle and high schools in Southern California, where Young Sheldon is primarily produced, and East Texas, where the show is set.
'Young Sheldon' executive producer/'The Big Bang Theory' star Jim Parsons attended three of the selected East Texas schools, while his 'Young Sheldon' co-star Montana Jordan, who plays his brother Georgie, attended one of the Texas schools, where his mother also taught first grade.
Chuck Lorre said, “To those of us involved in making it, 'Young Sheldon' is more than a television series. At its heart, it’s a story about potential. When the education of a child is supported, there is no limit to what that child might eventually achieve. We hope that in some small way, this program gives these public schools more STEM educational tools in the classroom for teachers to nurture and ignite the curiosity of students who will ultimately become our future leaders and scholars.”
Each of the 19 public school grant recipients will be acknowledged as a "Young Sheldon STEM Initiative" grant recipient and will receive a two-year grant from TCLFF which is specifically to support each school’s STEM teachers and STEM education programs within their existing in-class curriculum and/or after-school programs.
In addition to the direct grant funding to each school, the "Young Sheldon STEM Initiative" will also fully fund all costs for an annual experiential opportunity for students and teachers in and outside the classroom. Each school will be eligible to submit for continuation grants at the end of the two-year period.
This public school STEM initiative follows The Chuck Lorre Family Foundation’s collaborative establishment of The Big Bang Theory Scholarship Endowment at UCLA in 2015. This unprecedented endowment and scholarship program was designed to assist undergraduate students in need of financial aid who are pursuing their higher education in STEM fields.
The Big Bang Theory UCLA scholarship launched with a $4 million endowment, which included partner donations from the 'TBBT' cast, producers, crew, CBS, Warner Bros. Television. The program supported an inaugural class of 20 TBBT/UCLA scholars for the 2015–16 academic year, adding five scholars each succeeding academic year — in perpetuity. To date, 'The Big Bang Theory' endowment at UCLA has supported 35 TBBT/UCLA scholars.
Each year, the scholars come to the set to be honored by the cast and crew, and the scholars have created an official UCLA on-campus club which provides mentorship and weekly study groups.