October 2, 2008
ExxonMobil Funds $1.6 Million Education Program in New Orleans
The ExxonMobil Foundation announced today a donation of $1.6 million to launch a pilot program in four New Orleans public high schools to help students prepare for college.
The donation to Tulane University will establish a training and incentive program to increase participation in the Advanced Placement Program(1) at four public high schools in Orleans Parish over the next five years, starting next spring.
"We are very proud to help offer this high-impact program to the students of New Orleans," said Gerald McElvy, president of the ExxonMobil Foundation. "Preparing students for college is critical to New Orleans, Louisiana and the nation. This program has the necessary tools and our partners have the necessary resources to make this a huge success."
Today's announcement took place at John McDonogh High School, one of the first schools selected to pilot the program.
"We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform public education in New Orleans. This generous gift from ExxonMobil hastens the day when our school system will serve as a model for other cities around the country," said Scott Cowen, president of Tulane University, who accepted the donation on behalf of the Scott S. Cowen Institute for Public Education Initiatives at Tulane University.
The Cowen Institute will launch and provide ongoing oversight for the program with a full-time staff member and additional resources. Program support will be provided by the National Math and Science Initiative, a non-profit launched in 2007 to help America regain its global leadership position in technological innovation. ExxonMobil was the founding sponsor with a commitment of $125 million.
Superintendent of the Recovery School District, Paul Vallas, also attended the announcement, along with participating high school principals, teachers and counselors.
"We are thrilled that this outstanding program is launching in four New Orleans high schools. To have these highly trained teachers providing our students with the tools they need to get into college is a huge step forward for our education system," Superintendent Vallas said.
The Advanced Placement Program (AP(1)), administered by the College Board, is one of the leading programs available to prepare high school students for higher education. High school students who do well in AP classes and pass the AP Exam attain college level skills and have the opportunity to obtain college credits. The training and incentive program used to increase participation in the Advanced Placement Program has worked successfully in school districts across the United States and is proven to significantly increase college readiness. According to research done by the National Center for Educational Accountability (NCEA), students passing AP Exams are three times more likely to earn a college degree than students who do not pass. And African-American and Hispanic students who pass an AP Exam are four times more likely to earn a college degree than those who do not.
(1) Advanced Placement, Advanced Placement Program and AP are registered trademarks of the College Board.
About Exxon Mobil Corporation
Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) and ExxonMobil Foundation, the primary philanthropic arm of Exxon Mobil Corporation in the United States, engage in a range of philanthropic activities that advance education, health and public policy in the communities where ExxonMobil has significant operations. In the United States, ExxonMobil supports initiatives to improve math and science education at the K-12 and higher education levels. Globally, ExxonMobil provides funding to improve basic education and combat malaria and other infectious diseases in developing countries. In 2007, together with its employees and retirees, Exxon Mobil Corporation, its divisions and affiliates, and ExxonMobil Foundation provided $207 million in contributions worldwide. Additional information on ExxonMobil's community partnerships and contributions programs is available at www.exxonmobil.com/community.
About The National Math and Science Initiative
The National Math and Science Initiative's mission is expanding programs with proven success in math and science education across the nation. The initial focus is on replicating two programs that each have 10 years of data proving they work: the training and incentive program for AP and UTeach, a program to recruit, prepare and retain qualified math, science and computer science teachers. Major support for the national initiative is provided by Exxon Mobil Corporation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, with in-kind assistance provided by IBM and Perot Systems. For more information, visit www.nationalmathandscience.org.