YMCA of the East Bay Opens CIRCLe Lab in East Oakland with Dr. Mae Jemison

Brings STEM Learning Opportunities & Career Awareness to Students
The YMCA of the East Bay has launched their CIRCLe Lab, bringing “real-life STEM” to the East Oakland
Community (located at 5908 Foothill Boulevard @ Seminary).  Honorable guests at the debut yesterday included Dr. Mae Jemison (the first African-American woman to travel in space), Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Bayer & many other community partners that
have helped bring this CIRCLe Lab to life.
Dr. Mae Jemison speaks with several Oakland students.
What is a CIRCLe Lab?
CIRCLe Labs are an
innovative effort to bring STEM education into low-income neighborhoods outside
of the school day. The CIRCLe Labs pilot project is an initiative of the
for STEM Education
, founded in 2011 at California State University, East Bay, to serve as a “backbone institution” that leverages the Bay
Area’s existing strengths in STEM education, reduces costs, and builds new
CIRCLe Labs are the fruition of years of research about
roadblocks minorities and women face in pursuing STEM education. They are also
the result of important leadership from East Bay industry and policy leaders. Wareham Development provided the
crucial first funding to develop the CIRCLe Lab concept, and introduced the
YMCA of the East Bay to the CIRCLe Lab team. Wareham has been an active part of
a network that has supported the Institute since its founding in 2011 as a way
to build a STEM-competent population in the East Bay and throughout California.
Another key partner has been the East Bay Economic Development
, which has brought the resources of local governments and
businesses into STEM education outreach. 
East Bay EDA members are some of the key suppliers of the STEM volunteers
who will fuel CIRCLe Lab presentations.
Children from the David E. Glover Education
and Technology Center video-conference into
the CIRCLe Lab Debut.

Don Lau, Interim President & CEO of the YMCA of the East Bay
thanks the key community partners for making this CRICLe Lab
a possibility.

Other key
partners include the
David E. Glover Education and Technology
; additional funders
Bayer, the Tesoro Foundation; the Hellman Foundation; and more.
These partnerships take CIRCLe Lab programs onto an exciting
new level, bringing in the Y’s existing community-building philosophy to create
a sustained climate of STEM awareness that includes the Y’s youth development

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Zennie Abraham is CEO of Zennie62Media, Inc.