WAILEA — Maui Economic Development Board (MEDB) held its annual fundraiser dinner, “Pathways to our Future,” on Saturday, Aug. 20, 2016. Lt. Governor Shan Tsutsui was among several State officials and dignitaries who attended the event. The Lt. Governor and his daughter, Mikayla, returned this year to be part of the program as hosts of the Family Feud, The STEM Edition game.
“This worthwhile event recognizes the critical need to support and expand STEM programs for our youth,” said Lt. Gov. Tsutsui. “It’s important that we do all we can to engage and prepare our children for entry into the 21st century workforce, which will help them become competitive nationally and globally with their peers. We are nurturing budding scientists, engineers and mathematicians who will create new ideas, new products and new industries.”
One of the event’s highlights was the announcement of this year’s Daniel K. Inouye Innovation Award winner. This prestigious award was inspired by the late senator’s unwavering commitment to the application of science and technology to solve challenges around us inspired this prestigious award. This year’s winners are Keona and Jasmine Conroy-Humphrey from Lanai High School.
Since the MEDB Ke Alahele Education Fund was established in 2006, over $1.2 million in grants have been awarded to Maui County’s schools and organizations. This past school year alone, more than $137,000 in grants were allocated which enabled ten robotics teams to compete on Maui, Oʻahu and even the mainland; equipped digital media labs with the latest equipment and software; supported a monthly televised newscast and bilingual website to archive STEM activities; empowered students working on community-service projects using STEM tools; and assisted MEDB’s STEMworks™ educational programs.