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AMSA Awarded $105,000 Cummings Grant

AMSA Awarded $105,000 Cummings Grant

AMSA awarded $105,000 Cummings grant

Funding will increase access to engineering programs for underrepresented students 

The Advanced Math and Science Academy Charter School (AMSA) is one of 150 local nonprofits that will share in $30 million through Cummings Foundation’s major annual grants program. AMSA was selected from a total of 630 applicants during a competitive review process. The school will receive $105,000 over three years.

The grant will fund a summer science experience to broaden student participation in engineering and increase access for underrepresented student populations in the AMSA and greater Marlborough community. Students in the summer program will participate in sessions at AMSA and at the University of Massachusetts Lowell's Engineering Dept.

“AMSA is excited for this opportunity to offer students a new and unique view of our engineering program and also see what an engineering program looks like at UMass Lowell," said Christina Jagielski, chair of AMSA’s science department.

“Along with access to the engineering program, this program is intended to encourage and motivate students to grow their knowledge, understanding and curiosity about required skills and opportunities in STEM fields,” said Padmaja Bandaru, chair of AMSA’s computer science department.

The Cummings $30 Million Grant Program primarily supports Massachusetts nonprofits that are based in and serve Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties.

Through this place-based initiative, Cummings Foundation aims to give back in the areas where it owns commercial property. Its buildings are all managed, at no cost to the Foundation, by its affiliate, Cummings Properties. This Woburn-based commercial real estate firm leases and manages 11 million square feet of debt-free space, the majority of which exclusively benefits the Foundation.

“The way the local nonprofit sector perseveres, steps up, and pivots to meet the shifting needs of the community is most impressive,” said Cummings Foundation executive director Joyce Vyriotes. “We are incredibly grateful for these tireless efforts to support people in the community and to increase equity and access to opportunities.”

The majority of the grant decisions were made by about 90 volunteers. They worked across a variety of committees to review and discuss the proposals and then, together, determine which requests would be funded. Among these community volunteers were business and nonprofit leaders, mayors, college presidents, and experts in areas such as finance and DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion).

“It would not be possible for the Foundation to hire the diversity and depth of expertise and insights that our volunteers bring to the process,” said Vyriotes. “We so appreciate the substantial time and thought they dedicated toward ensuring that our democratized version of philanthropy results in equitable outcomes that will really move the needle on important issues in local communities.”

This year’s grant recipients represent a wide variety of causes, including housing and food insecurity, workforce development, immigrant services, social justice, education, and mental health services. The nonprofits are spread across 46 different cities and towns.

Cummings Foundation has now awarded $480 million to greater Boston nonprofits. The complete list of this year’s 150 grant winners, plus nearly 1,500 previous recipients, is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.

About the Advanced Math & Science Academy Charter School (AMSA)

Founded in 2005, AMSA is a public middle and high school educating students in grades 6-12. Our mission is to create an atmosphere of celebration of knowledge where children of all backgrounds and abilities excel in all subjects, especially in math, science and technology, empowering them to succeed in the workplace in our modern, high-tech world. We bring high quality education, typically available only at private or exam schools, to an all-inclusive, public-school setting. AMSA does not charge tuition, and admittance is based solely on a space-availability lottery. AMSA was ranked the #2 public high school in Massachusetts in 2022 by US News & World Report. A mission-critical fundraising campaign is underway at the school to put the most current science and technology into our students’ hands in earlier grades. Learn more by visiting www.amsacs.org.

About Cummings Foundation

Woburn-based Cummings Foundation, Inc. was established in 1986 by Joyce and Bill Cummings of Winchester, MA and has grown to be one of the largest private foundations in New England. The Foundation directly operates its own charitable subsidiaries, including New Horizons retirement communities, in Marlborough and Woburn, and Cummings Health Sciences, LLC. Additional information is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.

Cummings 2023 Winner