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September 15, 2022

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Julie Lata

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Paving the Way to More Promising Futures

education

by Julie Lata

Sep 15, 2022

At Applied Materials, we believe that education inspires young minds, opens new doors and paves the way to more promising futures. Putting this philosophy into action, the company and the Applied Materials Foundation invest in efforts globally that are aimed at helping students fulfill their academic potential, regardless of their socioeconomic status, race, gender or zip code.

This school year, Applied Materials and the Foundation are funding direct services and teacher professional development in a few key areas, in alignment with our long-time education strategy while being responsive to local education challenges exacerbated by the pandemic:

  1. Children enter kindergarten ready to learn
  2. Students read at grade level by 3rd grade
  3. Youth successfully complete rigorous math and science courses in middle school
  4. High schoolers pass college prep courses and graduate ready for college and/or career

Together, Applied Materials and the Foundation prioritize programs that engage families in their students’ academic success. We also fund efforts to engage youth in hands-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs early and often, helping them understand the link between their academic studies and future career paths.

Entering school ready to learn

To increase the percentage of children entering kindergarten ready to learn, the Foundation invests in organizations like Grail Family Services (East San José, CA) and AVANCE (Austin, TX), both of which provide impactful, culturally responsive programming for children and their families.

Reading at grade level in elementary school

As youth enter elementary school or the global equivalent, Applied Materials and the Foundation work with organizations that raise literacy rates while instilling a lifelong love of reading. In the U.S., Springboard Collaborative (East San José, CA), Bookspring (Austin, TX) and SMART Reading (Hillsboro, OR), all supported by the Foundation, are dedicated to make reading exciting and accessible to youth and their families. Outside of the U.S., the company funds work by Wuxi Lingshan Charity Foundation (China) and Boyo Social Welfare Foundation (Taiwan) to improve literacy for underserved youth.

Successfully taking rigorous courses in middle school

In middle school, the focus turns to math and science readiness. Support from both Applied Materials and the Foundation for the Silicon Valley Education Foundation focuses on accelerating teacher effectiveness in math through professional learning and peer collaboration in East San José, CA. In Austin, TX, Foundation funding underwrites the National Alliance for Partnerships in Equity’s work with a Central Texas school district to increase the percentage of Black and Latinx youth, especially those identifying as female, who enroll in academically rigorous middle school math courses.

Students graduate high school ready for college and/or career

Once students are excited about learning, Applied Materials and the Foundation encourage them to dream big. Foundation collaborations with Breakthrough Central Texas (Austin, TX), Breakthrough Silicon Valley (San Jose, CA) and College Possible (Portland, OR) help ensure students are academically and emotionally ready for college. In Gloucester, MA, corporate and Foundation support for LEAP for Education’s Career Ready program provides high schoolers with a better understanding of the options available to them upon graduation. Outside of the U.S., the company works with the Israel Scholarship Education Foundation to encourage high school students living in boarding schools to complete high school and pursue higher education, and in Singapore a charitable grant to Community Chest focuses on maximizing the educational experience for at-risk or out-of-school youth.

Creating links between academics and future career paths through hands-on STEM activities

As a tech company, Applied Materials knows the importance of introducing and keeping kids engaged in STEM subjects. For example, this year, the company is funding science programs for youth in India, where corporate support is helping Pratham Education Foundation create a Science Center in Maharashtra, and in Korea, where funding provides elementary students with hands-on science education with Child Fund Korea. Similar efforts are underway in Japan with company support for Houkago NPO After School, focused on teaching programming to students, and in Montana, where the Foundation supports Flathead County Library Foundation’s free Summer STEM Experience.  Foundation support for the Western Idaho Science and Engineering Fair as well as the Arizona Science Center means that more rural students have access to STEM programming, and through the Applied Materials Foundation’s Generation Girl® initiative, we are increasing the number of girls and non-binary youth participating in afterschool STEM programming across the U.S.

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Even as the pandemic has disrupted in-class learning around the globe, Applied Materials along with the Applied Materials Foundation remains confident in the potential of young learners throughout the world to Make Possible® a Better Future. Together, we are humbled by the efforts of our district and nonprofit partners around the world as they pave the way to more promising futures.

Julie Lata

Program Manager, Global Community Affairs

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As a program manager for Global Community Affairs, Julie leads strategic community investments in Silicon Valley, building and stewarding relationships with local nonprofit organizations. A San Jose resident, in her spare time, Julie enjoys practicing yoga, running, and spending time with friends and family.

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