Collins Aerospace pushes STEM education, collects supplies for Charlotte students

Collins Aerospace pushes STEM education, collects supplies for Charlotte students
(Rich Taylor)

Due to the transition to a virtual learning environment for Carolina schools, parents and families are finding it difficult to access supplies for their kids to complete their school year and not fall behind. Many of the more vulnerable and low-income families depend on help from Classroom Central to provide simple supplies, such as paper and pencils.

Classroom Central collects and distributes free school supplies to students living in poverty.

Many community members and organizations are stepping up to help the nonprofit, like Collins Aerospace.

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The Charlotte-based aerospace systems manufacturer is holding a virtual school supply collection in efforts to help relieve the burden that many struggling families are facing.

“At Collins Aerospace, we want to inspire youth to be future innovators and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) leaders,” said Glen Calder, finance specialist at Collins Aerospace. “To achieve this though, students must have the necessary resources to be successful in school.”

Collins Aerospace employees at 2019 backpack distribution event
Collins Aerospace employees at 2019 backpack distribution event

The organization’s Young Professionals employee resource group created the fundraising campaign and is asking employees to donate funds or school supply items such as pencils, crayons and notebooks.

“One of the greatest aspects of hosting a virtual school supply drive is that donors can choose which supplies they want to donate, including the opportunity to provide an entire 20-person classroom with supplies,” Calder said.

For many families, the needs of the home sometimes outweigh needs at school. When a family must choose between buying enough food for dinner or paying the power bill, the pressure of purchasing school supplies is an added expense that families can’t afford.

“For many of us, the start of school meant going shopping to pick out new pencils, notebooks, crayons and backpacks,” Calder said. “Unfortunately though for many kids, new school supplies is something their family cannot afford.”

Since 1997, in partnership with Classroom Central and Communities in Schools of Charlotte-Mecklenburg, the WSOC-TV 9 School Tools program has collected school supplies, which are then distributed free to students in grades K-12.

A 9 School Tools financial donation program is in place with different levels of giving that will support the needs of Classroom Central. Donors can equate their monetary donation to what can be supplied by Classroom Central.

Here are some of the giving levels:

  • A donation of $9 will help provide homework supplies for students.
  • A donation of $25 will help fill a student’s backpack with school supplies.
  • A donation of $50 will supply a teacher with essential school items.
  • A donation of $100 will supply an entire class with STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) kits.

You can also donate school supplies at any Showmars, Ashley HomeStore and E.R. Plumbing Services until August 14.

Learn more about 9 School Tools at www.9SchoolTools.com.