The Jeffrey Epstein VI Foundation Advances Science Education in the US Virgin Islands
The largest science fair in the US Virgin Islands received a huge boost from renowned science investor and local resident, Jeffrey Epstein. The fair, called the St. Thomas-St. John STEM Fair, was organized by the Virgin Islands Department of Education and brought together hundreds of grade school students from across the islands, to showcase their science work for awards at the University of the Virgin Islands Sports and Fitness Center.
STEM stands for Science, Math, Engineering and Technology, and the Jeffrey Epstein VI Foundation, which supports youth organizations throughout the USVI, played a key role in sponsoring the event. Specifically, the foundation supplied more than a hundred Microsoft Surface 2 computers, Touch keyboards and Nylon Sleeves for Microsoft Surface. The foundation also provided funds to host the STEM Fair, and travel and accommodations funds for the winners and chaperones to attend the STEM summer camps.
“The STEM fairs are not just about awarding students for their impressive work,” Jeffrey Epstein commented. “They offer an exciting incentive for students across the Virgin Islands to participate in science projects at school and at home.”
The caliber of the 165 projects at the STEM fair were astounding. One 11 year old prize winner, Ricky James Jr. for example, showed how to power a calculator with a penny instead of batteries. Other projects included a solar powered speed boat and a juicer made from a garbage door motor and recycled dishwasher parts.
The top scorers in each category were presented with a trophy, a STEM plaque, a STEM certificate and an iPad. Categories ranged from science research, science demonstrations, math real world problem investigations, math real world models, video presentation, Powerpoint presentations, music technology, Web page design, desktop publishing and programming.
Based in the St. Thomas, the Jeffrey Epstein VI Foundation plays an active role in supporting the Virgin Islands Department of Education and youth organizations across St. Thomas. The foundation is known for supporting cutting edge science research in the United States and for establishing the Program of Evolutionary Dynamics at Harvard University in 2003.
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