Since SMASH's inception in 2004, 100% of our 459 alumni have graduated high school and enrolled in college. Of alumni, 94% enrolled in a four-year university and 47% of these attended the top 50 universities in the country. Nearly 80% graduated within five years and 74% declared a STEM major in their freshman year, in comparison to only 23% of all college freshman, an impact three times higher. Persistence levels are also high, with 84% of STEM majors persisting beyond the freshman year and 73% persisting in their junior year. Computer Science is the top major, followed by biology. SMASH alumni attend selective colleges such as UC Berkeley, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara, Stanford, Emory, Dartmouth, Cal Poly, UCLA, Brown, Duke, MIT and University of Pennsylvania.
SMASH residential sites over the summer include UC Berkeley, UCLA, UC Davis, Stanford University and in 2017, Morehouse College in Atlanta. Students are supported throughout the academic year with weekly Computer Science courses, field trips, seminars and with speakers who are professionals in STEM fields.
Please see www.lpfi.org for a more comprehensive description of SMASH.
SMASH currently costs $5,000 per scholar per year, including room and board for the five-week summer program. LPFI’s intensive program model has been proven over the past 12 years to result in impacts for youth that are triple that of mainstream educational outcomes. We recognize that there are so many barriers to success for the youth that we serve, that this intensive, four-year approach is required to support and empower youth for lasting success.
LPFI also organizes Level the Playing Field Hackathons as “gateway” events to intrigue youth in technology. We invite and welcome donations of all sizes to support our work and the youth that we serve.
SMASH is seeking supporters who can: sponsor students individually or an entire cohort of 30 students per year; fund instructors, enrichment experiences and materials, as well as volunteer as mentors or role models.
Funders and Partners
The National Science Foundation
Bayer USA Foundation
Rose Hills Foundation
McCormick Family Foundation
Innovate Family Foundation
Leslie Family Foundation
Ford Motor Company
Irene Scully Foundation
Ralph Parsons Foundation
The programs in this database clear a high bar. STEMworks reviewed each program against CTEq's Design Principles for Effective STEM Philanthropy.
Identify and target a compelling and well-defined need.
Use rigorous evaluation to continuously measure and inform progress towards the compelling need identified.
Ensure work is sustainable.
Demonstrate replicability and scalability.
Create high impact partnerships
Ensure organizational capacity to achieve goals.
Offer challenging and relevant STEM content for the target audience
Incorporate and encourage STEM practices.
Inspire interest and engagement in STEM.
Identify and address the needs of under-represented groups.