Victor Cruz and the Victor Cruz Foundation were invited as guest speakers at the home of the first federal building in Washington DC, designed for both public/ private purposes, to explore the STEM and workforce landscapes and how afterschool and summer learning programs can make a difference now and in the future. As the first event of its kind, the Afterschool STEM Summit focused exclusively on the intersections and partnerships with afterschool and summer learning opportunities and featured remarks from business leaders, education stakeholders and STEM partners. The event also spotlighted the release of a new report that highlights the positive benefits of afterschool STEM learning and parental support.
Victor spoke to the audience on the importance that the Boys & Girls Club of Paterson played in his life as an after school program and his support of implementing STEM programs in similar afterschool settings through strong partnerships. Current Boys & Girls Club of Paterson member and STEM student, Deziah Gonzalez, also made the trip to DC to speak on her experience in the STEM programs provided through the support of the Victor Cruz Foundation and the impact it’s had on her. “Upon graduating high school, I would like to attend and play basketball for a Division I College or University such as Florida State, University of Connecticut or South Carolina. However, while playing basketball I plan on obtaining a degree in either Engineering or Sports Medicine. I enjoy the STEM program at the Boys and Girl Club, because it provides hands on experience and many activities that give me an opportunity to learn new things. The Victor Cruz Foundation and the Boys and Girls Club of Paterson has inspired me to be involved in my community and give back just like Victor Cruz has been doing for us.”
Deziah is currently a Freshman at the Garret Morgan Academy of Transportation and Engineering High School.