November 16, 2016

Media Advisory -- New AT&T Contribution to Support Students

Southern Illinois University Carbondale will recognize new and continuing financial support from AT&T for two university programs at 11 a.m., Friday, Nov. 18, in Student Center Ballroom B. 

The university will celebrate AT&T’s significant contributions to Rising Scholars, a program that continues support for students who participated in the Saluki Summer Bridge to Success program, and the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute’s East St. Louis Metropolitan Leadership Weekend. 

Reporters, photographers and camera crews are invited to attend the interactive event. Interim Chancellor Brad Colwell, and Jim Maurer, vice president of AT&T Illinois, along with university program directors and students will be available for interviews. 

The Summer Bridge program, now in its third year of support from AT&T, emphasizes science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) to several students each year. The Simon Institute’s leadership program annually hosts up to 45 African American junior high and high school students from the Metro East for sessions on leadership and career awareness education. This is the second year of support from by AT&T for the leadership weekend. 

This year’s contribution brings AT&T’s total investment in the SIU Carbondale programs to $200,000 over three years. 

During the event, officials will participate in a 30-minute STEM competition with five teams of students made up of Rising Scholar students. Each team will receive a bag of random items and a scenario with a problem that must be resolved. The teams will present their solution to a panel of judges consisting of AT&T representatives and university faculty and staff.  The purpose is to promote engagement in the STEM fields, product creation, problem solving and teamwork. 

Rising Scholars is a comprehensive college success program that provides mentoring, group tutoring, career coaching, work-study and scholarships. The program also helps improve retention, move students toward graduation and prepare them for the workforce. AT&T’s donations have helped provide annual scholarships, participation in co-curricular activities and exposure to undergraduate research experiences for 106 students. 

The leadership weekend program with the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute just concluded its 14th year. The program brings Metro East students to campus for two days of activities that focus on enhancing leadership qualities of African-American young men through reinforcing positive qualities, building skills and increasing career awareness education. 

For more information, contact Matt Baughman, assistant to the chancellor, at 618/201-0082.