Delaware State University and Verizon Innovative Learning — an education initiative of the Verizon Foundation — recently renewed a relationship through which Delaware middle school minority males are enrolled in summer intensive courses in science, technology, engineering and math.

Launched in 2015, the Verizon Innovative Learning program works with Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Hispanic Serving Institutions to prepare minority male students in middle school for the tech careers of the future. Verizon connected with DSU in 2016, awarding the university a $400,000 grant to work with middle school students in Delaware.

Since 2016, about 80 students in the DSU-Verizon program participated in summer courses that provide entrepreneurship training, hands-on learning experiences in next-generation technologies like robotics, augmented reality and 3-D printing and access to college-aged mentors. The students also took part in monthly Saturday programming for continued STEM education courses and mentoring. Overall results from the 2016-17 school year show that 91 percent of student participants demonstrated an increased ability in science and 90 percent had an increased ability in math.

With the recent renewal of the relationship, Verizon awarded DSU an additional $300,000 grant to continue the program with an increased outreach to 100 minority middle school male students.

For more, visit verizoninnovativelearning.com.