The Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub recently awarded their second round of Educator and Community-Based Organizations microgrants. With ample evidence that COVID-19 is widening the existing systemic education and inequality gaps, our aim is to partner with educators and local non-profits to develop projects that reduce barriers and support students. Through this support, students will gain more access to meaningful science, technology, engineering, math (STEM), and career and technical education (CTE) opportunities.

A total of $88,881 was awarded to fund a total of thirty-three equity-focused, STEM-CTE related projects or initiatives:

Microgrants totaling $19,789 were awarded to the following 17 educators:

  • Student Online News Website – Michelle Balmeo, West Albany High School; to provide financial support for a student online news website, The Whirlwind.
  • Forensic Chemistry Project – Michelle Cahill, Philomath High School; to purchase Forensic class supplies for hands-on activities, ie, fingerprint and blood analysis.
  • Health Occupations CTE Class – Donna Carter, Philomath High School; to purchase professional blood pressure kits, stethoscopes, and touchless medical thermometers.
  • Hands-On STEM Projects – Cindy Drouhard on behalf of all Greater Albany Public School (GAPS) 7th & 8th Grade Science Teachers; to purchase supplies for 7th-grade Geology unit engineering projects and 8th-grade rocket engineering projects.
  • Food Truck Project – Maria Guerrero, Central Linn School District; to purchase supplies to build a food truck for the Modern Latin Cultures program.
  • Art Supplies – Babette Grunwald, West Albany High School; to purchase supplies for art and pottery kits.
  • SnoLab Field Trip – Lindsay Haggas, Sweet Home High School; to take an Outdoor PE class for a custom ski & snowboard manufacturing experience.
  • Culinary CTE Projects – Jacqueline Kahler, West Albany High School; to purchase culinary lab supplies.
  • WAHS Preschool – Shea Looper, West Albany High School; to purchase STEM supplies & materials for the WAHS Preschool.
  • Hands-On CTE Workshops -Douglas Meyer, Linn-Benton Community College; to purchase supplies for hands-on CTE mechanical/electrical lessons for middle/high school students.
  • South Albany Do It For the Culture Program – Duece Phaly, South Albany High School; to purchase Go-Pro cameras for SAHS student community-building and social media productions.
  • K-2 STEM Program – Audrey Richards, Sand Ridge Charter School; to purchase supplies for the school’s STEM Curriculum for K-2 students.
  • Personal Finance Podcast – Joey Running, West Albany High School;
  • Robotics Club – Aaron Shown, Scio High School; to purchase robots to teach engineering, physics, and computer science.
  • Culinary CTE Projects – Dolly Skiles-Victorine, West Albany High School; to purchase culinary lab supplies.
  • Makerspace STEM Kits – Josh Stauber, Harrisburg High School; to purchase supplies for a mobile maker space.

Microgrants totaling $69,092 were awarded to the following 16 community-based organizations:

  • Albany Exploration Zone (STEM Saturdays) – Albany Parks & Recreation Department, Albany; to purchase supplies for STEM Saturday programming for youth Pre-K through 8th grade.
  • Grant and Scholarship Management Software to Support Equitable Opportunities for Albany Students – Albany Public School Foundation, Albany; to purchase software to help make CTE programs at community college and trade school more accessible for traditionally disadvantaged students.
  • Pinewood Derby Project – Boys & Girls Clubs of the Greater Santiam; to purchase Pinewood Derby Club kits and supplies for competition.
  • Hybrid / Virtual Outdoor School for 2021 – Calapooia Watershed Council, Brownsville; to support the work of a Ph.D. student working on the implementation of hybrid/virtual Outdoor School (ODS) for the 2021 season.
  • Library of Things Collection – Corvallis Public Library, Corvallis; to provide Family STEM Kits and Nature Backpacks for their Library of Things Collection.
  • DSW in a Box Kits – OSU Discovering the Scientist Within (DSW), Corvallis; to purchase  84 “DSW in a Box” kits to be mailed to participating girls, hence increasing access and program participation.
  • STEM Library of Things – Lebanon Public Library, Lebanon; to provide materials for the library’s STEM Library of Things collection.
  • CTE Signing Day – Linn-Benton Community College, Albany; to provide financial support for LBCC’s annual CTE Signing Day event.
  • K-12 Outreach – LBCC Space Exploration Team (SET), Albany; to provide support and supplies for SET to do regional K-12 STEM programming.
  • Growing Leaders Early Learning Center – Mid-Willamette YMCA, Albany; to purchase supplies and activities to provide STEM programmatic experiences and learning opportunities for Pre-K students.
  • Advancing Youth’s Agricultural Sciences Literacy through SEL Integration: Skills Hinge On Teachers (SEL SHOT) – OSU Pre-College Programs, Corvallis; to provide free professional development for educators training them in the implementation of a framework of Social Emotional Learning (SEL) in their teaching.
  • STEM Academy Summer Camp – STEM Academy at OSU, Corvallis; to provide scholarships for summer camp participants.
  • STEAM Career Exploration project – Thuggy Bear Cares, Albany; to provide materials for an Aviation-based career exploration program.
  • Lebanon HealthCareer Ladder – Western Health Sciences COMP-Northwest, Lebanon; to provide hands-on health and science educational opportunities for youth grades 6-12 and their parents.
  • Rainbow Dance Theatre Workshops – Western Oregon University, Monmouth; to provide local & virtual Code Can Dance, Drum & Fly Workshops.

About the Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub

In our first round of microgrants, we funded thirty-five projects totaling $78,019. With our second round now completed, we have supported a total of sixty-eight projects for a total of $166,900.

These microgrants are made possible by the Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub, with funding and support from the Oregon Department of Education, the Ford Family Foundation, the Oregon Community Foundation, and the John and Ginger Niemeyer Foundation.

The hub partners with local schools, businesses, and non-profits to expand STEM and CTE opportunities for all P-20 students in Linn and Benton counties.

To find out more about our work, please visit

Third Round of Microgrant Opportunities

We recently opened our third round of microgrants. The deadline to apply for this third round is April 23, 2021.