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  • Press Release

FOSSI Announces Major Milestone Supporting 550 Scholarships

National Initiative Is More Than Halfway to Meeting Ambitious Goal of Supporting 1000 Students

Kelly Montes de Oca

ORLANDO (October 7, 2022) – Representatives of The Future of STEM Scholars Initiative (FOSSI) today announced that the program is more than halfway towards meeting its ambitious goal of supporting 1000 scholars through 2025. The announcement was made during the first ever HBCU Week at Disney World, hosted by FOSSI Founding Partner, The HBCU Week Foundation.To date, the program has raised funding for 550 scholarships at an investment approaching $30MM, helping to develop a new, more inclusive generation of STEM talent.

Through partnerships with chemical manufacturers and affiliated stakeholders, FOSSI provides $40,000 scholarships to students studying preferred science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) degrees at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The program also offers leadership development, mentorship and internship opportunities, and a one-to-one match with one of 60 sponsors committed to helping scholars achieve their goals.

FOSSI Chairman, Mark Vergnano, former CEO of The Chemours Company, noted the historic nature of the program, “Never before has our industry come together to make such a significant, meaningful impact on the lives of historically under-represented students. This simply would not be possible without the support of our Corporate Sponsors. We are incredibly proud of this achievement and look forward to building and growing FOSSI in continued partnership with the HBCU Week Foundation.”

To help meet this important milestone, more than 20 organizations signed on to support future FOSSI classes, providing a strong foundation for FOSSI and its students in the future. These include:

  • A C& S, Incorporated
  • The American Chemistry Council
  • AdvanSix
  • BASF Corporation
  • Bayer
  • Cabot Corporation
  • Celanese
  • The Chemours Company LLC
  • Chevron
  • Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC
  • Dow
  • DuPont
  • Eastman
  • Kraton Corporation
  • Merck & Co., Inc.
  • PPG Industries, Inc.
  • Sasol (USA) Corporation
  • The Shepherd Chemical Company
  • Trinseo
  • Solvay America, Inc.
  • W.R. Grace & Co.

Founder and CEO of the HBCU Week Foundation, Ashley Christopher, spoke to the value FOSSI provides in driving students to pursue STEM at HBCUs across the county. “FOSSI has created a model for partnerships which enable students to pursue their dream of attending an HBCU with less financial burden. Importantly, by providing training and support from mentors at Corporate Sponsors, it can also help to increase the number of students that graduate from HBCUs.”

To learn more about the scholarship, visit www.FutureOfSTEMScholars.org. Applications can be submitted at www.FutureOfSTEMScholars.org/apply. Deadline to apply is January 31.

Future of STEM Scholars Initiative

The Future of STEM Scholars Initiative was founded in 2020 by the American Chemistry Council, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE), The Chemours Company, and the HBCU Week Foundation. FOSSI is a national chemical industry-wide program which provides scholarships to students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), helping to eliminate financial barriers for historically under-represented groups. Sponsored by chemical manufacturers and related industry stakeholders, FOSSI provides scholarship recipients $10,000 per year for four years and connects these students to leadership development, mentoring and internship opportunities at participating companies. Learn more at FutureofSTEMscholars.org

American Chemistry Council

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies engaged in the multibillion-dollar business of chemistry. ACC members apply the science of chemistry to make innovative products, technologies and services that make people's lives better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved environmental, health, safety and security performance through Responsible Care®; common sense advocacy addressing major public policy issues; and health and environmental research and product testing. ACC members and chemistry companies are among the largest investors in research and development, and are advancing products, processes and technologies to address climate change, enhance air and water quality, and progress toward a more sustainable, circular economy.

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