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  • Staff Writer

Unique STEM Program Partnership Celebrates Its First Graduates

Pictured in the front row are (l-r) Mark Grande, Penn State Abington STEM Academy instructor, Andre Krug, KleinLife president & CEO, Dov Trietsch, STEM program math teacher, Michael Kagan, Penn State Abington associate professor of Physics, and Emma Reznik, George Washington High School language teacher. Pictured in the back row are some of the STEM program graduates and student teachers.

In 2022, KleinLife, Penn State Abington, and George Washington High School developed an educational partnership to provide a unique STEM program model to local high school students. This week, the program reached an important milestone with the graduation of 16 scholars.

Andre Krug, president & CEO of KleinLife, notes the great success of these students. "These talented graduates, most of whom are recent refugees from Ukraine and Belarus, have shown immense dedication to their studies. They have had access to invaluable educational opportunities, fueling their passion for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. We are immensely proud of their growth, resilience, and commitment."

KleinLife has become a true home for thousands of immigrants from over 40 different nations. The changing demographics of Northeast Philadelphia, where KleinLife is headquartered, shows how much a program like this provides a lifeline to those in need. Approximately 40% of residents in the centers' surrounding zip codes are foreign-born, with many finding refuge from Ukraine, Belarus, and other countries, and over 90% of the STEM program students live in households with incomes below 200% of the poverty line. This important partnership is empowering aspiring young minds, breaking the cycle of poverty, and making a lasting impact on their lives and communities.

Looking ahead, most of these remarkable individuals will continue their educational journey through a dual enrollment program at Penn State Abington, conveniently based at KleinLife. This program offers them a unique chance to further develop their skills and gain practical knowledge. In recognition of their exceptional achievements, some of the most successful students will receive college scholarships to attend Penn State Abington.


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