CHICAGO  — The Chicago Pre-College Science & Engineering Program (ChiS&E), an innovative STEM program serving grades K-5 will hold its first fundraiser on Thursday, September 11, 2014. The theme of the event is “Developing Tomorrow’s Engineers.” It will be held at the University of Illinois@ Chicago, 750 S. Halsted Street from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Founded in 2008 by Chicagoan Kenneth Hill, the non-profit ChiS&E program is modeled on the award-winning Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program (DAPCEP) Hill established there in 1976. Hill served as the program’s executive director until 2004 when he retired and relocated to Chicago. The Chicago program is distinguished by a “cyber learning” component where students and parents use computers, cameras, hand-held devices, a website and blogs to document their activities and share them with their classrooms and their families.

Beginning with seven schools in 2008, the program now serves twice as many schools in low-income communities of color on the South and West sides of Chicago. Among many activities, in 2012 3rd grade students attended a Summer Lab Program at the University of Chicago Lab School where they engaged in hands-on activities that reinforced or challenged math skills. In 2013, a bridge construction competition among 4th grade students in the structural engineering track was held at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT). In 2014 5th grade students spent an entire month studying math with math professors at the University of Illinois @ Urbana-Champaign and U of I-Chicago.

The program has been lauded by many including former CPS Chief Education Officer Barbara Eason-Watkins who encouraged its development in Chicago. Recently ChiS&E was one of only 30 organizations out of a pool of 1130 applicants, nation-wide, to be awarded a 3-year $450,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) for its work in “developing and implementing transformative family engagement programs in the field of early childhood education.” To make a contribution, visit the website at
About The Chicago Pre-College Science and Engineering Program.

The Chicago Pre-College Science and Engineering Program (ChiS&E) provides highly-engaging, age-appropriate hands-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities for Chicago Public School (CPS) students in grades K–5 and their parents. For more information please visit or the bi-lingual website at

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