Boeing grants $71,000 to HudsonAlpha’s L.A.B.S. program

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- Today's children are tomorrow's future and Alabama's top leaders are recognizing that. Two companies with a large presence in Huntsville are working together to expose underrepresented students to the latest in biotechnology.

Seeing is believing. "There's something about being able to put on a lab coat and being able to see yourself in this particular setting. Being able to touch a piece of equipment that's valued at $400 or $1,000 and someone saying I believe that you can do this," says Dasi Price, the K-12 Student Experiences Lead.

HusdonAlpha along with a $71,000 grant from Boeing is giving disadvantaged and underrepresented students an opportunity to do just that. "A strong education system is what Boeing is all about," Tina Watts, the Community Investor for Boeing Global Engagement, emphasized.

The L.A.B.S. Program has been able to expand for their first official semester. "L.A.B.S stands for Launching Aspiring Biotechnology Scientists," Price explained. "It's allowed us to be able to bring in local teachers to help with the program. We're bringing local college students to serve as peer mentors for the program. It allows us to get resources that we did not have access to."

The program will be growing exponentially with a lab like this going from teaching thirteen students to sixteen and then thirty-two in the fall of 2018.

"We want to be able to leverage that student that again, is quiet in the classroom, probably is making a C in their math of their science class but they have a strong desire to be in this field and they need an opportunity," says Price.

A chance that many can hope to have for a long time to come, and that the current students do not take for granted. "Hudson Alpha and Boeing have experienced and had a long-term partnership in building the education system in Alabama and we want to continue that," Watts says.

Check with their website for registration and application information.