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What is STEMup Baton Rouge?

STEMup Baton Rouge is a community-based, collaborative project designed to close opportunity gaps and strengthen local STEM talent pipeline by providing high-impact STEM mentoring to middle school students enrolled in the East Baton Rouge School System.  See Year 1 Results

Why STEM Mentoring?

According to the Afterschool Alliance, lack of a STEM “identity” is often cited as one of the primary reasons that young people don’t pursue STEM fields.  Research has found that even students who do well in STEM subjects do not aspire to STEM careers – often times the students’ idea of what a STEM professional does and looks like doesn’t match who they are.  We believe that middle school mentoring can play a major role in addressing the issue early on and increasing students’ chances of graduating from high school prepared for success in college and career in Louisiana’s growing knowledge economy. 

High-Impact STEM Mentoring for middle grades can help build STEM identity in these ways:

  • Excite and sustain interest in STEM topics linked to their community
  • Build STEM knowledge, skills, and confidence
  • Provide access to community professionals, relevant experiences and valuable career possibilities

Our Model

Our mission is to provide engaging and locally relevant STEM-rich learning experiences that positively impact student attitudes about learning and empower them to problem solve, think creatively, use technology appropriately, communicate and learn from each other and mentors.  The model targets underrepresented students and our success depends on partnerships with STEM professionals and STEM-rich institutions, professional development for both mentor and teacher and methods for examining impact. 

Building STEM Identity

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The Foundation for East Baton Rouge School System (EBRSS) is an independent, not-for- profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to preparing students for successful post-secondary education, careers and citizenship. The Foundation generates private support for priority, high-impact projects for which tax dollars are not available. The Foundation is one of over 10,000 similar non-profit organizations nationwide dedicated to improving the quality of public schools by providing alternative resources, and strengthening relationships between school districts and the communities they serve.


Capital Area United Way is a 501 (c) 3 charitable organization working to advance the common good to create opportunities for a better life for all.  CAUW serves a 10-parish area, which includes: Ascension, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberville, Livingston, Pointe Coupee, St. Helena, St. James, West Baton Rouge and West Feliciana.


National Partner

Contributing Partners

Guiding Coalition

Baton Rouge Area Chamber

Baton Rouge Community College

Big Buddy

Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Baton Rouge


Children’s Coalition of Greater Baton Rouge


City Year

East Baton Rouge Parish Library

East Baton Rouge Parish School System


Futures Fund


LA Women in Technology

LSU Cain Center for STEM Literacy

LSU Center for Computing Technology

LSU College of Engineering

Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium

Louisiana Tech Park

Our Lady of the Lake College

Mayor-President Kip Holden

Red Stick Robotics

The Advocate