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Press Release

Xcel Energy Foundation awards grant to MSU Denver’s Summer Science Institute camps for area youth

Contact: Tim Carroll, Office 303-556-5136, Cell 303-870-7705

Posted: July 20, 2015

DENVER – Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Center for Advanced STEM Education announced today that it has received a $15,000 grant from Xcel ‌Energy Foundation in support of its Summer Science Institute program for middle and high school students.Xcel Energy Foundation Gift 2

This rigorous academic program fosters an understanding of essential science and mathematics skills in participating students, while increasing their interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). The STEM program is targeted to underrepresented populations in the Denver area and encourages participation from students of color, females and low-income students. Xcel Energy Foundation has been a lead sponsor of the summer camps since 2009.  

Since founding the Summer Science Institute camps in 1993, the Center for Advanced STEM Education has worked to improve the teaching and learning of STEM subjects for pre-college students by developing partnerships with schools, school districts, teachers and community organizations. There are 188 students enrolled in this year’s programs.

“We are inspired by Xcel Energy Foundation’s dedication to STEM education and grateful to partner with them in offering these unique hands-on, academic summer offerings taught by MSU Denver professors that lay the foundation and encourage further study of STEM by Denver’s youth,” said Hsiu-Ping Liu, associate professor of biology, who directs the program.   

In making the funding award, Kynnie Martin, an Xcel Energy Foundation representative added, “We are thrilled to give students a chance to explore careers they never dreamed of in science and technology. Providing educational opportunities for underprivileged youth is one of many ways the Xcel Energy Foundation serves the communities we represent.”

The four two-week camps run June 1 through July 31, explore math and science in fun, exciting ways using hands-on learning in a team-oriented atmosphere on the MSU Denver campus. Although other similar programs exist nationally, MSU Denver’s Summer Science Institute is one of the few taught by college-level faculty.


About Xcel Energy Foundation

The mission of the Xcel Energy Foundation is to use the collective knowledge, resources and skills of its staff and colleagues to make a positive impact in communities throughout its service territory. Serving as the philanthropic arm of the company, the Xcel Energy Foundation oversees the charitable activities and supports the volunteer programs of Xcel Energy and its subsidiaries. In 2014, the foundation distributed more than $3.6 million in focus area grants to promote STEM education, workforce development, environmental stewardship and access to the arts in the communities it serves. More than 402 organizations across an eight-state service territory received grants, averaging just over $8,500 each.


About Metropolitan State University of Denver

For 50 years Metropolitan State University of Denver has transformed the lives of students, served as a courageous leader in higher education and boldly advanced the well-being of metro Denver communities. Throughout its history, the University has been known as a gateway to opportunity through broad access, quality academics and education relevant to the Colorado economy. The yearlong MSU Denver anniversary celebration commemorates the creation in 1965 by the Colorado General Assembly of the state’s first urban higher education institution.

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