The ELI Foundation is a 501©3 not for profit organization. Its vision is to make quality STEM education accessible to all students, regardless of circumstance. Our initial focus will be to test our programming ideas in North Carolina.
The ELI Foundation is headquartered in Chapel Hill, NC. The Chapel Hill community has a long standing tradition of offering world class educational opportunities to its children and young adults.
The ELI Foundation is able to utilize the leading educational resources that exist in close proximity to Chapel Hill to provide academic enrichment through collaboration with universities, research organizations, educational institutes, high performing local teachers, government entities, research scholars and even high performing students.
The ELI Foundation’s mission is to take the best practices of many programs and schools in many countries and synthesize them to attain educational success through sharing and collaborative iteration amongst practioners, students and scholars throughout the globe.
The ultimate goal is to find ways to bring academic STEM education excellence to underserved communities throughout the USA and to foster entrepreneurial opportunities that enhance the quality of distressed communities by offering sustainable and enduring job and business prospects.
We are starting our work in Robeson County, NC. We are working with the School of Business at UNCP based in Robeson County. We are bringing a number of programs to Robeson County that will bring a variety of education programs with resultant job and business opportunities for residents of this community.
These programs include the underwriting of “for credit” classes in coding and app design for local middle and high school students who aspire to fair pay jobs in the tech world. The curriculum would be a custom program with teacher training that has been successfully implemented in other parts of the USA. The programs also include coding training for adults who would receive coding assignments upon successful conclusion of their training program. The programs for adult students would be offered through an ELI / Thomas Family Center for Entrepreneurship and the Sama Group. The Sama Group works in developing nations teaching skills that allow participants to work in the virtual economy. Skills they teach include coding and other related skills. Our intention is to find unemployed and underemployed members of the community and provide training so that they can work on projects provided by SAMA for a fair and living wage and perhaps turn the skills into an entrepreneurial opportunity.
Finally we want to bring a tangible and accessible entrepreneurs’ boot camp with the possibility to use entrepreneur coaches and access to funding to help small putative entrepreneurs validate their ideas and possibly help them launch them in their community. A version of this boot camp would be turned into a one year entrepreneurship high school course for juniors and seniors.
The relationship with Robeson County and the experience of launching these programs will serve as an education laboratory whose lessons can be iterated upon and applied in other applicable environments.