ANCHORAGE, Alaska: Alaska Airlines has renewed its partnership with the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP) to provide a brighter future for middle school students from rural communities across the state of Alaska.
The second, three-year $1 million grant brings Alaska Airlines' total investment in ANSEP to $2 million. Over the next three years, funds will help transport nearly 2,000 Alaska students in sixth, seventh and eighth grades to Anchorage to attend ANSEP's award-winning Middle School Academy education program at the University of Alaska Anchorage.

"We're proud to see the continued success of ANSEP in fostering an interest in STEM education in the state of Alaska," said Marilyn Romano, Alaska Airlines' regional vice president for the state of Alaska. "Our goal is to make sure that as many students as possible have the opportunity to attend this program. We know the skills these students gain by attending ANSEP will benefit their communities and the state of Alaska, while preparing them for future success."

The ANSEP grants are among the largest financial donations Alaska Airlines has made in the state in its 85 years of operating in Alaska. In 2016, Alaska Airlines donated $3.6 million in cash and in-kind contributions to support more than 300 different nonprofit groups and organizations throughout the state.

ANSEP Student Scorecard at a Glance:
•More than 75 percent of Middle School Academy students complete Algebra 1 before graduating from eighth grade, compared to 26 percent nationally.
•95 percent of ANSEP's High School Acceleration Academy students advance one full level in math or science after attending a five-week summer course.
•Since the program's inception in 1995, more than 70 percent of ANSEP students who begin a collegiate bachelor's degree in STEM go on to graduate.

During the Academy students from Barrow to Wrangell attend classes that include problem-solving, research and communication skills incorporated with biology, chemistry, physics, environmental sciences, earth sciences, engineering and design concepts and field excursions. STEM professionals and university faculty teach the classes, giving students a university experience within a small structure.

(Posted on 28 October 2017, 1685830786 44O200O112O172)