CARLSBAD, New Mexico (May 17, 2022) — Groundbreaking new educational spaces are now open in Carlsbad, allowing generations of local students to stretch their imaginations and discover a love of scientific learning. 

The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation — along with Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Devon Energy, Edgewater Federal Solutions, Flogistix, Nuclear Waste Partnership and XTO Energy — teamed up to gift Carlsbad students seven high-tech science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) centers. All five Carlsbad elementary schools, as well as the Carlsbad Public Library and Early Childhood Education Center, received a STEM center. 

Community leaders celebrated the occasion with a ribbon-cutting and demonstration of the high-tech tools at Desert Willow Elementary School. Students’ faces lit up while interacting with the state-of-the-art equipment, including a 3D printer, Snap Circuits, Ozobots and Bee Bots. 

“This is an important day for Carlsbad families,” said LaVern Shan, deputy superintendent of Carlsbad Municipal Schools. “Thanks to the generosity of these local companies, our students will get to challenge their critical thinking skills and become inspired to follow their dreams. Who knows — the next generation of STEM leaders could be right here in southeastern New Mexico!” 

The Ripken Foundation provides training, a curriculum guidebook and activity kits to enhance the tools in the STEM center. 

The organization has opened more than 170 STEM centers nationwide, helping strengthen America’s most underserved and distressed communities by supporting and advocating for children. 

Steve Salem, President & CEO for the Ripken Foundation, said the initiative is helping kids learn important skills to set them up for a lifetime of success. 

“STEM education allows children to hone their scientific thinking and tinker with new technologies,” Salem said. “Exposure to STEM will serve them well in the future, no matter the career path they follow. We look forward to watching Carlsbad students reach for the stars and fulfill their full potential.” 

About the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation  

For the last 21 years, the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation has worked tirelessly to implement youth development programs and create parks that directly address the problems facing at-risk youth in distressed communities across the country. Inspired by one of the most iconic baseball families, the Ripkens created the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation to honor the legacy of its family patriarch, longtime coach, and mentor, Cal Ripken, Sr. The Ripken Foundation uses sports-themed activities to bring police officers, youth partners and underserved kids ages 9 – 14 together on a level playing field to learn invaluable life skills.  

The Ripken Foundation’s Youth Development Park Initiative creates clean, safe places for kids to play on multipurpose, synthetic surface fields that promote healthy living in an outdoor recreational facility. Since 2009, the Ripken Foundation has 106 completed parks across the country in 26 states and Washington, D.C. In 2021, the Ripken Foundation impacted over 1.2 million kids nationwide through its Youth Development Park and mentor programs. For more information, visit www.RipkenFoundation.org. Follow @CalRipkenSrFdn on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 

Media Contact: 

Haley Towe                                          

405-448-8834 (c) 

[email protected]   

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