Company receives award for advancing STEM literacy among youth
Washington, DC (June 25, 2019) — Bayer’s enduring commitment to American youth was recognized by The Congressional Award Foundation with the Corporate Commitment to America’s Youth Award last week. This special recognition highlights the life science leader’s creation and support of STEM initiatives that are helping to prepare the next generation of leaders and make science more accessible in communities nationwide.
The award was presented to Bayer representatives by the United States Congress at The Congressional Award’s Second Annual STEM Stars Reception on June 20, 2019 in Washington, D.C.
“Our youth participants have the chance to become the innovators, educators, researchers, and leaders able to solve the world’s most pressing challenges. The Congressional Award has a central responsibility to support tomorrow’s leaders today and we’re honored to work with and learn from an organization that shares this ideal,” said Paxton K. Baker, Chairman of The Congressional Award National Board of Directors.
Bayer is a Founding Partner of The Congressional Award STEM Stars Initiative, a project aimed at stoking passion for science and math at an age when many young people lose interest in them. The collaboration leverages Bayer’s 150+ years of scientific innovation with The Congressional Award’s decades-long experience of fostering community involvement to equip youth with the ability and confidence to explore science.
“We are honored and proud to be recognized for our longstanding commitment to STEM and to receive this prestigious award from The Congressional Award Foundation,” said Ray Kerins, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs for Bayer. “STEM continues to play a vital role in our nation’s economy and prosperity. We need to continue to inspire current and future youth generations to pursue STEM careers by helping them get access to the best resources and programs to succeed. The gold medal recipients are a true testament to the great talent we have in the next generation of STEM leaders.”
18 year-olds Divya Srihari of Chesterfield, Missouri and Kunal Kanwar of Edison, New Jersey are two beneficiaries of the STEM-focused partnership, both 2019 Congressional Award Gold Medalists and STEM Star recipients.
Divya advanced her career development in pediatric medicine by volunteering at St. Louis Children’s Hospital and participating in research programs like Students and Teachers as Research Scientists (STARS) and the Heart Rate Variability Lab. Divya even founded her own non-profit, GINHA (Global Initiative for Nutrition and Health Awareness), to educate school children about healthy nutrition and the risks of excessive sugar consumption. She is humbled to “serve diverse socio-economic communities in greater St. Louis while growing her knowledge of biomedical research.”
Kunal learned about medical practices by aiding healthcare professionals at local hospitals and developed his building, programming, and design skills through robotics. From these experiences he has “learned not only hard skills in computer programming, but how to be an effective leader.”
Since launching the partnership in June 2018, Bayer has helped Congress’ charity reach new and diverse audiences and grow to over 50,000 participants. In just a year’s time, 317 students from 33 states have earned a STEM Star and combined for 95,110 STEM activity hours in local communities.
Bayer actively offers opportunities for students to access hands-on STEM programming through school support, scholarships, baylabs, internships, and the Making Science Make Sense program.
Always innovating and never satisfied with the status quo, Bayer finds simple and elegant ways to expose STEM-related concepts to youth in everyday life.
The company’s annual Alka-Rocket Challenge is an event where student scientists compete for a chance to win $30,000 and to break the Guinness World Record for the highest launch of a rocket powered by Alka-Seltzer tablets.
Science Studio by Bayer was launched in December 2018, an Amazon Alexa Skill that offers STEM homework assistance and step-by-step instructions for kid-friendly experiments that can be done in and outside the home.
About The Congressional Award
The Congressional Award is the United States Congress’ only charity and the highest honor bestowed upon a youth civilian through the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Established by Congress as a public-private partnership in 1979 under Public Law 96-114, the program recognizes initiative, service, and achievement in youth ages 13 ½ – 23.
Bayer: Science For A Better Life
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of health care and nutrition. Its products and services are designed to benefit people by supporting efforts to overcome the major challenges presented by a growing and aging global population. At the same time, the Group aims to increase its earning power and create value through innovation and growth. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development, and the Bayer brand stands for trust, reliability and quality throughout the world. In fiscal 2018, the Group employed around 117,000 people and had sales of 39.6 billion euros. Capital expenditures amounted to 2.6 billion euros, R&D expenses to 5.2 billion euros. For more information, go to www.bayer.us.
# # #