Today, Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy announced the state’s most extensive list of agencies and organizations that will be funded with GEER II funds. The GEER II fund is part of a federal Covid aid package specifically designed to help educational institutions and is separate from the funding received by public schools.
“I am pleased to announce the list of institutions and program organizations that will receive GEER II funding.” said Governor Dunleavy. “These institutions throughout the state are doing wonderful things to educate and prepare Alaskan students for success now and in the future.” I am confident the funding will help improve educational outcomes for underserved and at-risk youth, and prepare students for future careers in our industry.”
The following is a list of institutions and programs that will be funded:
Alaska Military Youth Academy (AMYA) – Anchorage
The funding will be used to improve access, safety and security for at-risk youth at the university. Improvements include building and renovating walkways and ramps, repairing academic and training activities, and repairs to buildings.
Challenger Learning Center – Soldotna/Statewide
The Challenger Center’s vision is to have every student in Alaska experience the wonders of education through simulated space missions, e-missions and workshops each year. Current systems are no longer supported or useful, as they require complete replacement. Funding continues to allow the Learning Center to continue to provide dynamic, hands-on exploration simulations that help students learn and develop skills in decision making, collaboration, problem solving and communication.
The competitor was developed by Drone Education and Development, using special expertise in aerospace and aviation education to create and test a new system. The program is highly successful and with additional funding will create a self-sustaining model of training and teaching curriculum that can be commercialized and used statewide.
Alaska Sealife Center – Seward
Since Alaska is more coastal than the contiguous United States, it is important for Alaskan students to learn about the ocean and its wildlife. This arrangement will allow the Sealife Center to improve disability access so that all students can participate in the program. Financial aid also allows more students to experience the Center by increasing classroom visits at a reduced rate. Finally, part of the funding of the “Small Fry” program will be deployed to early childhood learners.
Northwestern Alaska Career and Technical Center (NACTEC) – Nome
This training will support NACTEC’s efforts to implement a road trip program of technology and technical development to fill the need for CDL drivers and heavy equipment operators in Nome and Western Alaska. The CDL and heavy equipment simulators will give students the skills they need to become certified operators and to operate the infrastructure and utility industries in the future.
Alaska Resource Education (ARE) – Statewide
Alaska Resource Education provides mineral, energy, innovation, and resource education for teachers and students across Alaska. Funds to expand, expand, improve area services and area reach, and increase the organization’s capacity to teach K-12 students a comprehensive curriculum about Alaska’s natural resources. In addition, it will provide a scholarship opportunity for rural students to participate in summer camp courses.
Future Farmers of America (FFA) – Statewide
Of the critical issues facing the public, few are more powerful than improving academics in public schools and providing stable, safe, and affordable food. The focus of this funding will be two-fold: to establish new programs in communities not yet engaged in agricultural education and FFA operations and to improve the quality and effectiveness of current programs that provide personal, academic and career education in agriculture through the K-12 agricultural curriculum. .