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November 2023 – Newsletter

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Check out our November 2023 Newsletter here.

 

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Where CABPES is Headed – President’s Letter

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2023 has been a very eventful year for CABPES. Because of our generous supporters, we offered all our programs this year at no cost to students—a record number of students registered for our programs. CABPES pilot Corporate Volunteer Program allowed us to decrease our student-volunteer ratio to 1-3:1 (students to volunteer). The pilot accomplished our goals, so we are continuing the Corporate Volunteer Program for the 2023-2024 program year.         

For the first time in our 41-year history, we had to run our programs in two different locations. In addition, we paid for some of this space. This school year, the goal is to have the programs in one place. Currently, this is space that CABPES must pay for. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” To continue our mission, CABPES needs to move forward in a big way. The move forward is that CABPES is working toward purchasing our own space.

You will hear about the capital campaign we need to purchase this space. Many of you cannot help us with large donations to buy this space. However, we learned from President Barack Obama that small contributions can also fund a campaign. Additionally, the needs of purchasing this space are more than just financial.

CABPES families, this move forward requires help from each of you. Your children have benefited from our math tutoring and the SAT/ACT College Preparatory Program. CABPES Future City students won second place in the regional competition this year. JETS students have learned about Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math careers. As a result of the Future City Competition and JETS, students have acquired teamwork, presentation, and speaking skills. Students attended field trips to Google and the Parker Water Treatment Plant. Summer Math Bootcamp students were able to improve their math weaknesses and take part in a field trip to Lincoln Hills. Summer Math Quest students solved over 80,000 problems and practiced 1650 math skills.

CABPES is committed to the continued exposure of the students. However, we must make some changes to get the funding to buy our space! We must document that our math programs are working. This documentation requires students to take diagnostic tests and provide us with math scores and grades that can reflect improvement. SAT students must take the tests given to them to help us document improvement. Students must use their IXL accounts. Funders want data, not just stories. As parents, you must ensure your students have good attendance in the programs they sign up for. We must follow up with former CABPES students. These are ways all our families and parents can help us obtain funding. Bring your students to programs consistently and on time, provide us with information about what your student(s) is doing in school and how they perform.   Tell us about your former CABPES students or families you know previously had students in our programs. Together, CABPES and your student(s) can move forward.

Blessings,

Dewey F. Brigham, Jr., Ph.D.

CABPES President and Executive Director

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CABPES Corporate Volunteer Week – President’s Letter

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Regarding math and science, the public school system nationwide desperately needs to help our students dig themselves out of a terrible situation that will negatively impact them and society for a lifetime. According to a recent article by Governor Jared Polis, “math scores have dropped in Colorado and the nation after three severely disrupted school years during the pandemic.” The late televangelist and author, Robert Schuller wrote a best-selling book in 1983 titled “Tough Times Never Last But Tough People Do.”  The CABPES organization is answering the call to the dilemma Governor Polis has described regarding students struggling in math. CABPES is revamping its math tutoring program to address the need to help underrepresented minority students overcome the deficits they are experiencing in math and science. We are rebuilding our Math Enrichment Program (MEP) with the support of many of the outstanding engineering companies in Colorado.

CABPES is in the process of implementing a pilot “Corporate Volunteer Week” initiative to get companies to provide 15 to 20 volunteers per night in the MEP program. The MEP program is designed to tutor students in grades 5 through 12 in math on Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6 to 8 pm. We aim to have approximately 30 math tutors in our math tutoring program every night. This approach allows CABPES to move from a student-to-volunteer ratio of 5:1 (students: tutor) to a 2:1 ratio. We encourage companies to bring swag to give to the students. Companies can provide the students with a light dinner (pizza or sandwiches). Companies can take photos to use as marketing and promotional material to demonstrate how they serve traditionally marginalized communities needing math help. So far, the companies already participating in the “Corporate Volunteer Week” initiative love the idea. They are telling other companies about our strategy. The beauty of this process is a company can volunteer once per year or as many times as they would like. Most companies plan to volunteer for one week in the fall and one week in the spring during the upcoming school year.

Parents, the ball is in your court, plain and simple! CABPES and our corporate partners are ready to serve the students needing help in math and science. Our pilot study has shown that our new strategy will work. Parents, this is what we need you to do to help your student(s) catch up in math and science. Please bring your student(s) to our facility Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6 to 8 pm. We recommend you be on time. Our data show regular attendance is critical to your child learning math. Play an essential role in your student(s) academics by getting with their teachers and finding out what they are learning in school when it comes to math. We are not asking you to teach math; just let us know what they are learning in school. With the Governors support, Colorado engineering firms, and CABPES vision, we can turn these students around in math and science. We have the village!

Blessings,

Dewey F. Brigham, Jr., Ph.D.
CABPES President and Executive Director

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2021 Annual Student Awards Program Book

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We are proud to present our virtual 39th Annual Student Awards Banquet Program Book. While COVID-19 forced CABPES to host our annual Student Awards Banquet event virtually in 2021, the support that CABPES received at this event was unprecedented. Financial contributions at this event totaled over $94,000! Please enjoy learning more about our programs and partners in 2021 while flipping through this book.

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Black History Month- A Time of Reflection, Celebration, and Action – President’s Letter

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I will begin this letter by acknowledging the vision of the founders of CABPES. CABPES was founded in 1980 by Ronald L. Mitchell, Larry Hancock, Janice P. Jupiter, Joseph R. Jeffary, Leothus Slaughter, Melvin Larkins, and David B. Mays. CABPES has served schools in the Denver communities for 40 years. CABPES’ most extended active member and the person that brought the JETS program to Denver is Ron Fontenot.

As I reflect on my first introduction to CABPES in 1986, I recall a group of determined men and women that came together to build a pipeline of young STEM professionals. I remember seeing committed and energetic Black professionals engaging in networking, serving as mentors and role models, and participating in professional development opportunities.

Shortly after that, I was introduced to CABPES afterschool STEM programs, including the Junior Engineers Tomorrow’s Scientists (JETS) program, Math Enrichment Program (MEP), SAT/ACT College Preparatory Program, and the Summer Math Boot Camp. These core STEM programs are still in existence today. It is estimated that CABPES has served over 10,000 students since inception.

In 1995, I became the president of CABPES. I have remained in this role since being elected, and in 2018 I became the executive director of CABPES. Many great things have transpired during my 25 years of leadership within CABPES. We serve students in the Denver Public Schools, Aurora Public Schools, Cherry Creek Schools, Jefferson County, Littleton Schools, Commerce City, private schools, charter schools, and homeschooled students.

CABPES has prepared students to attend colleges and universities throughout the United States. Our students have become engineers, scientists, doctors, nurses, educators, lawyers, business owners and are excelling in many other professions. For these and many other reasons, CABPES is recognized as the Number One afterschool STEM program in Colorado. This recognition comes to us by partnering with local consulting engineering, construction, and architecture companies, the oil and gas industry, local community colleges, and four-year colleges and universities. All these entities provide CABPES with the best and brightest volunteer professionals.

Our funders include individual donors, corporations, and small and large foundations throughout the United States. Thanks to all our supporters for bringing us this far! CABPES future remains as bright as ever!

Blessings,

Dewey F. Brigham, Jr., Ph.D.
CABPES President and Executive Director

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“Faith of a Mustard Seed” – President’s Letter

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As I reminisced over the past 20 months, I felt all kinds of emotions, both highs, and lows, as I contemplated the tough decisions we had to make in March 2020 in the wake of COVID-19. I remembered CABPES having to design virtual programs from scratch. Would we be successful teaching our students online engineering and math classes? Would our students, parents, and volunteers buy into this new way of learning that was thrust upon all humanity with no warning and no preparation? 

Then, I thought about our survival and sustainability, realizing for the first time in 39 years, we would not be able to host our largest fundraiser in 2020, which was our Annual Student Awards Banquet. My concern was about our students not dressing up in their lovely attire and showcasing the engineering projects they had tirelessly worked on. I thought about our graduating seniors missing out on their senior prom. Also, I thought about our seniors not walking up to the banquet stage to give their long-awaited speech discussing their experiences in CABPES and future plans in front of hundreds of people.

Little did I know, with the “Faith of a Mustard Seed,” our programs would thrive! Tirelessly, we designed virtual programs that met the needs of our students in both the Junior Engineers, Tomorrow’s Scientists (JETS) Program and the Math Enrichment Program (MEP). We served more students during the Pandemic than in the history of our organization. Also, we hosted a first-ever virtual banquet and raised more funds at this event than ever before. This past summer, we added a summer Book Club to our suite of STEM programs.

CABPES engaged in many Zoom discussions and meetings on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in large part because of the earth-shaking murder of Mr. George Floyd. As an organization founded and built on African Americans’ struggles and lived experiences working in STEM, we welcomed a seat at the table on this topic. I met with companies and colleges throughout Colorado sharing how our vision and mission focused on DEI beginning in 1980. DEI is not new to the CABPES organization.

As the summer ended and school began, CABPES made a courageous decision to resume in-person programming in September 2021. We are off to a great start with our math tutoring program, SAT/ACT College Preparatory Program, and preparing a cohort of middle school students to compete in the Future City Competition in late January 2022.

Finally, we are planning to have an in-person JETS program starting in January 2022. Companies and colleges are excited in supporting us as we teach the students about “Engineering and Designing Smart Cities for Americans with Disabilities.” We plan to enroll 100 students in the JETS program. Be on the lookout, registration will start soon!

Blessings,

Dewey F. Brigham, Jr., Ph.D.
CABPES President and Executive Director

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CABPES in the Community

CABPES Awarded Grant from the University of Colorado

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CABPES was awarded a $15,000 grant from the University of Colorado to finance a purchase of new Chromebooks, graphing calculators and lap tops. These supplies will serve the 200+ students that CABPES enrolls annually in our STEM programs.

CABPES is proud to partner with the University of Colorado in our joint work to encourage and assist African American and other underrepresented minority youth in their pursuit of STEM careers.

 

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CABPES in the Community

CABPES Partner Makes a Major Donation

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CABPES is proud to partner with PDC Energy. PDC Energy has stepped up to really elevate the reach and impact of CABPES in 2021 by providing a $40,000 gift earmarked for scholarship support of current students and future students of CABPES programs. “PDC is a proud sponsor of CABPES. CABPES is an incredible organization that gets students excited about STEM and STEM related jobs. Their programs are well-structured and interactive for the students.”
 
Thank you for your partnership this year, and each year PDC Energy!

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Opportunities

Apply Now for the Daniels Fund Scholarship

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The Daniels Scholarship Program provides the opportunity for highly motivated students to earn a bachelor’s degree that helps them build a successful career and rewarding life. Daniels Scholars® demonstrate exceptional character, leadership, and a commitment to serving their communities. Bill Daniels would also want his scholars to be proud Americans who value our free enterprise system and are prepared to give the world their very best shot. Apply here.

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CABPES in the Community

CABPES Awarded Strategic Investment Grant from Mile High United Way

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The Colorado Association of Black Professional Engineers and Scientists (CABPES) and Mile High United Way are creating change in Metro Denver. CABPES was awarded a $40,000 grant from Mile High United Way to support our after-school STEM programs to encourage and assist African American and other underrepresented youth in the pursuit of STEM careers.

 

CABPES was selected for funding through a competitive, data-driven community selection process by Mile High United Way.  “Mile High United Way is incredibly proud to partner with CABPES in this capacity to serve our community. In alignment with our strategic vision, we are proud to serve the individuals, children, and families in our seven-county footprint to ensure their needs are met; and we can’t do it alone. This partnership allows us to come together as a Community United and leverage our resources during an especially trying year,” said Christine Benero, President and CEO, Mile High United Way.