The International Soap Box Derby (ISBD) is looking to rev up interest in a whole new generation.
The Derby announced Tuesday that it has landed a grant from the Huntington-Akron Foundation for its ISBD After-School STEM Neighborhood Initiative. The Derby did not respond to a request asking the amount of the grant.
The grant will be used to not only generate interest in the fabled Akron institution but also provide opportunities for gravity racing along with so-called STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education.
The Derby plans to work with a number of Akron-area groups including Urban Vision, Launch Kenmore, Akron Urban League and Akron Public Schools through the Akron Children’s Museum.
One of the initiatives will be the Mini-Car Soap Box Derby STEM Education Program that will target 330 kids in the third to fifth grades in the Akron neighborhoods of Kenmore, Edgewood and North Hill.
Some Akron school children who are from lower to middle-income families will be selected to participate in a Soap Box Derby STEM program to be held at the Akron Children’s Museum.
Participants will work on scale models from each of the three Derby divisions of race cars.
"We are excited to work with Huntington Bank to collaborate in the Akron neighborhoods to provide educational learning experiences to the four partners in this grant opportunity,” said Mark Gerberich, Derby president and chief executive officer, in a statement. "The funds will help impact these students, expand the Soap Box Derby’s STEM education programs, and grow participation in Soap Box Derby programs.”
Craig Webb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.