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Passion Fulfilled: How Vladimir Casseus empowers leaders of tomorrow

Boston native and Earl Woods Scholar alumnus Vladimir Casseus grew up instilled with the mantra that education was the key to success. Alongside his parents, who pushed him to excel academically, Vladimir was guided by teachers, friends, mentors, church members, coaches and the extended family he built at TGR Foundation.

With a master’s degree in school psychology from Tufts University, Vladimir has worked as a School Psychologist within Boston Public Schools for more three years. He’s committed to motivating students to surpass their potential and overcome all obstacles.

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How STEM Studio connected students and educators across boarders

Professional development workshops and conferences are ways to learn new teaching strategies and improve one’s teaching practice.  In the summer of 2018, I attended my first weeklong STEM Studio hosted by TGR Foundation.  Even though I have participated in numerous workshops throughout my teaching career, there was something unique about STEM Studio.  In attempting to describe my STEM Studio experience, the word that comes to mind is CREATE.

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Passion Ignited: How TGR Foundation empowered Yeon Jin “Grace” Lee to pursue her passion for filmmaking

After being accepted into the University of California, Berkeley, the uncertainty Yeon Jin “Grace” Lee felt around her future at the university and in the United States dwindled as she went on to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in engineering. From UC Berkeley to NASA, her education opened doors to ignite her career and help her reach higher to obtain a Master of Science in software engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. It was through this experience that she gained her green card and security in her place in America.

From South Korea to Southern California, Grace overcame obstacles in her path as an undocumented immigrant and achieved great success. We recently connected at the flagship TGR Learning Lab in Anaheim, CA to reflect on her journey and how she’s using her platform and experiences to empower other students like her.

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Dr. Katherine Bihr shares the power and purpose of a mentor

Each year TGR Foundation welcomes dozens of students into the Earl Woods Scholar Program providing support beyond financial aid. Each scholar is matched with a dedicated mentor who will support and guide them through their college years and beyond. The mentorship component of the program has proven to be both valuable and memorable for our students, particularly those that leave home for the first time.

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TGR Foundation celebrates Giving Tuesday, matches December donations

At TGR Foundation we believe the best way to impact the world is to empower those who enter it. Our education programs transform empowerment into impact as we support students and educators around the world. With our generous donors, partners and volunteers, we are joining the global day of philanthropy to Empower The Journey of more students in need on Giving Tuesday, December 3. A $41K match from our Board of Governors will allow us to double the dollars raised through the end of the year.

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How TGR Foundation Empowered Andrés Cuamani’s Journey

Andrés Cuamani still remembers his first day at the TGR Learning Lab fondly. A 5thgrader at Dr. Peter Marshall Elementary School, Andrés spent a week at the Anaheim-based learning lab studying forensic science with his classmates. From surveying clues at a mock crime scene to studying fingerprinting techniques, Andrés experienced a different kind of learning. But what he really left with was the realization that there were countless opportunities awaiting him.

From 7th– 12thgrade, Andrés was a regular in the building, taking after-school classes from aerospace engineering to golf, and forging lasting, impactful relationships with the teachers. At the age of 16, Andrés became a volunteer at the learning lab and soon after, he became an official employee, landing his first job as a golf range attendant. When he realized his passion for teaching coupled with a desire to lend support to students like himself, Andrés took on an added role in Academic Support, a job he still has today.

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Scholar Voices: Creating social change through the lens of theatre

My love for theatre started when I was three or four years old and my godmother took me to see a musical, in my hometown of Boston, MA. I do not remember the name of the show or really what it was about, but I was fascinated by the colors and music. Something about seeing the performers act, sing and dance gave them this magical glow on the stage. My young and impressionable mind had concluded that to be so talented you had to have super abilities, and I knew I would be a part of that magic one day.

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Alexis Ohanian joins TGR Foundation Board of Governors

TGR Foundation is pleased to announce the appointment of internet entrepreneur and investor, Alexis Ohanian, to the Board of Governors. 

Ohanian serves as the co-founder and managing partner of San Francisco-based Initialized Capital, an early stage venture fund with over $500M under management and a portfolio with $36B in market value so far. Prior to his work at Initialized Capital, Ohanian co-founded Reddit, a social news and discussion website.

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TGR Foundation celebrates milestone in education impact

Since 2006 when the flagship TGR Learning Lab opened its doors in Anaheim, CA, TGR Foundation has had a lot to celebrate, including its most recent milestone of one million students impacted by TGR EDU: Explore, alone.

Developed in partnership with Discovery Education, TGR EDU: Explore is a free digital resource library that offers interactive web experiences, lesson plans, training videos and tools for educators, students and families to explore new disciplines and gain skills for a modern and expanding workforce.

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TGR Learning Lab Student Spotlight: How Mentorship Guided me through College, Career and Life

As a first-generation Mexican American, I felt intimidated and insecure about applying to college. My mom, knowing well that she could not guide us through the U.S. education system, connected my sister and I to programs that could give us the tools to achieve our academic goals. We joined the TGR Learning Lab, then known as the Tiger Woods Learning Center, in 2008.

I didn’t think much of the programs there – I was not necessarily passionate about STEM, but I was motivated to utilize the college preparation resources despite how confusing and overwhelming it all seemed at the time. It wasn’t until my last year at Savanna High School, in 2013, when I started volunteering at the Learning Lab, that I discovered the power of mentorship. Thanks to the unwavering encouragement of two long-time employees of the Learning Lab, Denisse Jover and Lea Segura, I was able to break out of my shell and gain confidence on my way to college.

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Scholar Voices: Discovering a New Path to Career Success

Ever since I was a little boy, I loved science. Although I come from a rural, mountainous Chinese village called Qian Yang Cun in Fuzhou, I dreamt of becoming a scientist. I always knew I wanted to use science to help people. As a child, I would collect plants and soil from around the mountain and mix them together to create my own “panaceas,” ready to cure dying plants and insects along my path.

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College Access, Success Symposium empowers educators at flagship TGR Learning Lab

Visitors entering the doors of the flagship TGR Learning Lab on Thursday, October 24 shifted from eager fifth graders heading toward the end of their week in the Day Program to dedicated educators excited to gain information, connections and resources to better prepare their students for success. The 5thannual College Access and Success Symposium united educators across Southern California and beyond.

With more than 15 sessions to choose from the symposium covered a variety of higher education-related topics from applications and admissions to understanding financial aid and empowering students to stand out. With more than 150 educators in attendance and limited capacities in the classrooms, many sessions were at full capacity.

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Shaping Our Future with STEM: My International STEM Studio Journey

International STEM Studio is an amazing initiative. I learned about it after the CEO of Soronko Academy, my boss, attended the inaugural training in 2018. She came back with a new perspective on how to teach science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) at the academy and how to organize training of the trainer sessions to enable her to share the knowledge she had gained with others, who trained in different parts of Ghana. When she asked me if I would like to take part in the next cohort of the International STEM Studio, I jumped on board with excitement. I couldn’t wait for the growth in the knowledge I knew the training session would come with. I thought about my students, and I knew this was an opportunity to provide them with better education and guide them toward achieving their goals. On July 25th I embarked on a trip to the flagship TGR Learning Lab in Anaheim, CA sponsored by the United States African Development Foundation (USADF) to participate in International STEM Studio.

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TGR Learning Lab shines spotlight on Nadia Chavelas

The TGR Learning Lab expanded learning program fulfills the mission of TGR Foundation by empowering youth through exposure, preparation and skill development for the workforce of tomorrow. With more than 50 courses available for middle and high school students to engage in after school, our mission is brought to life as participants discover their passions […]

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TGR EDU: CREATE | Six reasons to participate in STEM Studio

Professional development workshops and conferences are ways to learn new teaching strategies and improve one’s teaching practice.  In the summer of 2018, I attended my first weeklong STEM Studio hosted by TGR Foundation.  Even though I have participated in numerous workshops throughout my teaching career, there was something unique about STEM Studio.  In attempting to describe my STEM Studio experience, the word that comes to mind is CREATE.

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How to Build Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Classroom

This summer I had the chance to examine the role of TGR Foundation from a global perspective. It started with a speaking role at Global MindED’s annual convening in Denver, CO where we discussed how organizations reach a diverse population with their work. The latter half of the summer took me to Israel where I examined the complexity of creating a STEM-integrated workforce by better preparing educators to meet the changing world facing their students. And most recently TGR EDU: Global trained more than 50 educators from around the world to transform their teaching through a focus on inquiry and problem-based pedagogy.

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Scholar Voices: A portrait of passion, how art inspired my interest in engineering

As a child, I always found myself consumed in art. Every brush stroke required complete concentration, each colored patch demanded a precise amount of pressure. However, contrary to what art means to others, art was never about expressing myself. For me, it was a way to keep myself busy while my parents worked and my sisters were at dance practice. It made me feel like I was somewhere else in the countless hours that I spent locked inside my home and made time fly.

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A Booster in STEM Learning and Teaching: My International STEM Studio Experience

I’ve been a teacher of primarily science for a long time, more than 30 years, 19 as an international educator. Currently, I am working as a science teacher in the small Balkan country of Kosovo, but I’ve also lived and taught in eastern Venezuela and southeast China near Hong Kong.

Last spring, I received an e-mail from my current director at the Quality Schools International – International School of Kosovo suggesting I apply to TGR Foundation’s International STEM Studio, a week-long professional learning program bringing educators together from around the world. It looked like a good opportunity because I am very much interested in keeping current in my own education and professional growth. When I was selected to participate, I was very excited.

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TGR Foundation releases 2018 Annual Report

At TGR Foundation, we believe youth should live in a world where opportunity is universal and potential is limitless. Our mission to empower students to pursue their passions through education is brought to life through programs that impact students around the globe.

We believe in students, educators, partnerships, global education and impact. Through the 2018 Annual Report, readers will learn how we act on these beliefs and work toward reaching millions around the globe.

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Jim Yong Kim joins TGR Foundation Board of Governors

TGR Foundation is pleased to announce the appointment of Jim Yong Kim, M.D., Ph.D., to the Board of Governors. Kim, the former 12thPresident of the World Bank Group, is currently the Vice-Chairman and Partner at Global Infrastructure Partners, a fund that invests in infrastructure projects across several sectors around the world.

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