We hope our support of STEM programs creates greater accessibility and exposure for youth to STEM education.

At Amazon, we recognize that the jobs of tomorrow require a stronger aptitude for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). That’s why we support STEM education programs to better prepare students for future in-demand jobs and this means investing in programs that benefit all learners, including students with disabilities.

Last week, we had the privilege of surprising students from the Kansas School for the Deaf (KDS) and Kansas State School for the Blind (KSSB) with a donation to help support their growing STEM curriculum. Each school had their own celebration event where we revealed more than $10,000 in STEM-related technology and supplies, which includes their big wish list items.

KSD received a photo studio suite that included three digital cameras, photo lenses, and a lighting set to assist with its digital technology curriculum while KSSB received a high-tech 3D printer for students and teachers to design and print tactile teaching aids for “hands on” learning. In addition, donations included Kindle Paperwhite e-readers and Amazon Fire tablets with VoiceView. VoiceView provides spoken feedback to describe the actions that take place on device screens for the blind and visually impaired. KSD also received robotics kits, educational toys, and gift cards.

Assisting us with the surprise celebration were 20 associates who volunteered to help us set up and guide the students as they explored the donated items. In fact, some of our associates are graduates of the Kansas School for the Deaf and were the ones who introduced to the schools. Amazon currently employs thousands of people with disabilities across the United States.

We hope our support of STEM programs creates greater accessibility and exposure for youth to STEM education. After all, technology and innovation fuel our business and we are so proud to provide STEM resources to these two schools to help prepare our next generation of inventors.