(Photo courtesy of The Rocky Mount Telegram)

The Golden LEAF Foundation recently joined Nash-Rocky Mount Public School administrators and businesses to open STEM labs for middle school students.

These labs will allow educators to improve STEM programs in these schools with proper technology and applications.

Each lab has 18 stations with computers and programs to help in learning different subjects like applied physics, sustainability, robotics, manufacturing and electronics. They are designed to create hands-on learning and engagement from students, according to a report by the Rocky Mount Telegram.

STEM programs are designed to give students the skills and qualities they will need to become employees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields. There has been a growing shortage of these workers in eastern North Carolina, and by supporting labs in this area the demand may be better met in the future.

The Golden LEAF Foundation also is offering scholarships to schools throughout the state to support STEM programs.

College students can be awarded $250 or $750 depending on their enrollment status to help with costs associated with school – like books, testing and transportation, according to the Courier-Tribune. Students can apply through their college’s financial aid office, and deadlines are determined by each institution.