The Atlanta-based nonprofit association Women in Technology’s (WIT) philanthropic arm, the WIT Foundation, announced the 2015 Cycle One Grants to area organizations that support WIT’s mission to serve as passionate advocates for the support and development of women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers. 

The WIT Foundation focuses on pre-career programs that encourage girls and young women to pursue careers in STEM. The Charitable Giving Committee, comprised of board members and leaders from the WIT Foundation, considers applications from worthy organizations each year to receive funding for programs that further the organization’s mission.

“It brings WIT significant pleasure to support STEM nonprofit programs.  It is through these efforts that we will hit our goal of 50/50 by 2020,” stated Vicki W. Hamilton, WIT Foundation Vice President.

According to Denise Reese, WIT Foundation President, “We are excited to partner with organizations whose mission and vision align with WIT’s 50/50 by 2020 initiative. It’s amazing to be part of a community that is working to increase the pipeline of Women STEM leaders.”

$40,000 was granted to the following organizations:

Cool Girls: an Atlanta-based nonprofit, founded in 1989, dedicated to the self-empowerment of girls from Atlanta’s toughest neighborhoods. Cool Girls’ Cool Tech program teaches Cool Girls participants about robotics, video game design, graphic design, animation, programming languages, and science experiments.

GA Gwinnet College Foundation: The Georgia Gwinnett College Foundation builds relationships with alumni, friends, corporations and foundations to raise, manage, invest and administer funds from private resources to further academic excellence at Georgia Gwinnett College.

Generation STEM: Generation STEM offers hands-on-learning for children ages 4 to 14 through FUN activities from designing and constructing rockets, hot air balloons, and roller coasters to robotics, video game designing and creating fun objects using LEGO® bricks. We offer after school, evening, and weekend classes held at schools and community centers throughout Southwestern Metro Atlanta. Summer camps are available as well.

Girls Inc.: Girls Inc. develops research-based informal education programs that encourage girls to take risks and master physical, intellectual and emotional challenges. Major programs address math and science education, pregnancy and drug abuse prevention, media literacy, economic literacy, adolescent health, violence prevention, and sports participation.

Girl Develop It: Girl Develop It is a nonprofit organization that exists to provide affordable and judgment-free opportunities for women interested in learning web and software development. Through in-person classes and community support, Girl Develop It helps women of diverse backgrounds achieve their technology goals and build confidence in their careers and their everyday lives.

Girl Scouts: Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta strives to ensure that every Girl Scout in the Greater Atlanta area has the opportunity to explore different aspects of science, technology, engineering and math each year. Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta plan to do this by providing “fun with purpose” events, activities and resources to girls throughout our council. Programs offered (grades K-12) by Girl Scouts include: Girl Scout computer science workshops at Georgia Tech; Girl Scout Robotics series program; Super STEM Expo; and partnering with STEM community partners.

TAG Education Collaborative: TAG-Ed is dedicated to strengthening Georgia’s future workforce by uniting Technology Association of Georgia (TAG) resources with leading education initiatives while emphasizing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). TAG-Ed works to elevate the quality and effectiveness of Georgia’s schools in order to produce more students pursuing STEM specific majors in institutions of higher education and ultimately STEM-related careers.

By 2018, there will be 218,000 Georgia job openings in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields, with a significant shortage of qualified applicants to fill them. TAG Education Collaborative (TAG-Ed) is designed to increase awareness of the importance of STEM education for the future economic well-being of Georgia.

VOX Teen Communications: In addition to producing the newspaper, blog, and website, VOX Teen Communications serves metro Atlanta teens through a variety of programs that emphasize the role of communication in youth development. These include programs created and administered by VOX as well as partnerships with other community organizations and non-profits.

For more information about WIT, or to donate, please visit www.mywit.org.

ABOUT WOMEN IN TECHNOLOGY: Women in Technology, an Atlanta-based organization, passionately supports women at every stage of their STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers — from the classroom to the boardroom. WIT has set a goal of making Georgia the state with the highest percentage of women in the STEM workforce by the year 2020. WIT enables women to build strong networks, develop leadership skills and advance their careers. WIT is the largest, most active female-centered STEM organization in the metro Atlanta region.