Boeing Company: Grants for STEM Higher Education

 

OVERVIEW: Boeing’s grantmaking reflects its status as one of the largest aerospace and defense contractors in the world. STEM education is one of the company’s primary funding areas.

IP TAKE: Boeing prioritizes hands-on science learning programs and partnerships with organizations that allow Boeing to take an active role in programs it supports. Guidelines and accessibility differ by location and focus.

PROFILE: Boeing’s grantmaking is closely tied to its corporate citizenship program and is presented in tandem with its employee donations, employee volunteering, and efforts that focus on benefiting the locations in which the company operates. One of the company's funding priorities is education. According to its website, Boeing partners “with universities and higher education institutions around the world” and its “priority is to fuel Boeing’s second century of talent and innovation by fostering world-class university relationships and delivering benchmark entry-level career programs.” Within its education initiative, the company divides its grantmaking between early education and primary and secondary education.

The latter interest emphasizes preparation for STEM careers (not uncommon for a corporation heavily dependent on a strong pipeline of young people going into these careers). This grantmaking funds a combination of professional development for teachers and administrators, as well as curriculum and programmatic support to help student performance in science and math. Boeing also prioritizes hands-on learning programs and science fairs.

Boeing partners with universities worldwide through its University Relations program to offer “student-focused programs” such as internships, externships, co-ops, scholarships, and enrichment programs enabling the next generation to “collaborate on innovative products by working alongside thinkers, dreamers, designers and builders” in the field. More information about the University Relations program is available by emailing the team directly. Past grantees include a $105,000 grant to Washington State University "to expand mentoring opportunities for students studying in STEM disciplines" and a $75,000 grant to Seattle Pacific University to "improve K-12 physical science instruction through teacher collaboration and research-based curriculum development."

In addition to grants, funding is available through Boeing’s Employees Community Fund (ECF). Unlike some other corporations that match donations to individual organizations dollar-for-dollar, Boeing allocates employee contributions based on a determination by “employee advisory boards [that] work to locally distribute combined employee donations.” Boeing covers all of the administrative overhead so that all donated dollars go directly to the beneficiary organizations.

The application process and eligibility for Boeing funding varies by state, except for higher education grantmaking, which is centralized through the University Relations program. New Grantseekers can find more detailed region specific information in the “Seeking Support” section on Boeing’s Community Engagement page. Additionally, the Directors for Global Corporate Citizenship at Boeing are also local / regional, so grantseekers should contact the company to find the director for their location. Remember, Boeing seeks with organizations that allow Boeing to take an active role in programs it supports, so grantseekers’ pitch will be stronger if they can find ways to engage with the company and its employees.

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