The PPG Industries Foundation has donated $10,000 to Millikin on behalf of PPG Industries' Mt. Zion glass manufacturing facility to support the iSmartgirls Discovery Day Camp.
Thanks to PPG's support, the technology-based camp, operated by Millikin's Center for Entrepreneurship, held two full-day sessions earlier this year. Ninety girls, double last year's number, attended iSmartgirls Reflective Day at Rock Springs Environmental Center as a wrap-up of the earlier sessions.
The iSmartgirls program offers Decatur-area girls in sixth through eighth grade the opportunity to learn about innovations in science, math, art and real-world technology through intensive hands-on learning experiences, with Millikin students acting as mentors. The day included three labs - iDesigner, where girls work with geometric patterning and tessellation for artistic design; iChemist, where students create their own skin care products; and iEngineer, where students explore solutions for bettering their world - and a creative "upcycling" project, transforming recyclables into objects of value.
"We also introduced a sustainability-focused project for girls who attended our 2012 sessions to reinforce the science and technology that underlie recycling and related real-world issues," says Sharon T. Alpi, Coleman Foundation professor in MU's Center for Entrepreneurship.
"PPG is strongly committed to supporting the communities where its employees work and live, especially through educational programs focusing on science, technology and math," says John Gauthier, plant manager for the Mt. Zion glass manufacturing facility. "We are proud to continue our decades-long relationship with Millikin University by helping to enrich this unique program for girls. Some of our female employees are hoping to serve as mentors or speakers for future camp sessions, which will offer an exciting opportunity to grow this relationship further."