"The Chicago Inventors Organization (CIO) is a Chicago-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity founded in 2004. We recently launched our Young Inventor Entrepreneurs Program (YiEP), which aims to expose young Chicagoland students, grades 6-10, to STEM subjects using innovative, entrepreneurial-based ideas that cultivate their interests and creations through hands-on workshops.
In fact, I recall a time when we were at a Chicago Public Elementary School on the far south-side who opted into our prior YiEP Program. Although it was an in-class school program, in order for students to participate, they had to have good grades as well as a good behavioural track record. However, there were 3 boys who stayed in trouble & in the Principal’s office. The instructor had tried everything from speaking with their parents, to eliminating them from extra-curricular activities & even suspending them from school, but unfortunately nothing worked.
It wasn’t until these young men attended two sessions of our YiEProgram, did their behaviour change instantly & dramatically. We actually sat down with them individually & asked what influenced them to change? And their response was, “BECAUSE THE BOOKS JUST WASN’T GETTING TO US & WE WERE BORED!” It turned out, they were more interested in our STEM based curriculum because it displayed how they could use their bare hands to build & create tech savvy equipment that could be utilized by millions for centuries to come!
Additionally, our YiEP curriculum was developed to combat the socioeconomic conditions that often keep Chicago children from realizing their educational dreams. YiEP provides them with a sustainable avenue to receive the engagement and education needed to excel in school, technology, business, and most importantly, their adult life.
We all know STEM fields hold some of the most expensive educational programs out there, which is why we are passionate about providing students with access to the STEM tools and instruction that they’ll need to grow into world-changing inventors, engineers & entrepreneurs!"
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