The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia


September 2, 2012

BAF gets $50,000 grant for Full STEAM Ahead initiative

The Beckley Area Foundation has received a $50,000 grant from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation. These funds are being re-granted for specific arts-in-education awards of $5,000.

A simple grant application is required describing a project that integrates the arts into one or more of the STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering and math) and thus moves STEM to STEAM The application can be found online at or can be obtained by calling 304-253-3806.

Unlike many available grant opportunities, these awards may be used to pay professional artists to work with teachers and their students. Imagine bringing a sculptor into a welding class to help design and create an ornamental gate, a stained glass artist into a geometry class to help students plan and build a window copying a geometric quilt pattern, or any other number of possibilities.

The funds may also be used to purchase necessary supplies and equipment, or to cover the cost of a field trip. The $5,000 grants can be utilized in any manner that facilitates the integration of art in science, technology, engineering or math instruction.

The foundation has enlisted the assistance of the Arts Section of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History in administering this exciting opportunity.

“We are trying to reach area teachers, arts organizations, and artists regarding this exciting opportunity,” commented Susan Landis, executive director of BAF, as well as chair of the West Virginia Commission on the Arts. “We know that there are many creative people who can implement wonderful projects with these grants.”

Educators in the fields of math, science, technology and engineering, as well as those involved in performance afnd visual arts, are encouraged to apply. Collaborative applications will be welcomed. Creativity and innovation are expected.

Proposed projects can be designed for students of any age within the kindergarten through 12th grade class range and may also include collaborative initiatives with area post-high school trade programs, colleges and universities.

Applicants for these grants must either be a school or an organization holding a 501-c-3 determination letter from the Internal Revenue Service. Applications will be accepted from the BAF service area including Raleigh, Webster, Wyoming, McDowell and southern Fayette counties. Oct. 1 is the deadline for submitting an application.

BAF is branding this initiative as Full STEAM Ahead. Through this special opportunity, schools and organizations can create projects that intersect “A” (the arts) with STEM (science, technology, engineering, math), thus helping West Virginia be a leader in a new economy.

Contact the Beckley Area Foundation with questions at 304-253-3806 or  For inspiration and assistance developing your project contact Cicely Bosley, at the WVDCH for project guidance:


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