By Ron Leuty
The philanthropic arm of Bayer Corp. will give more than a half-million dollars to California State University, East Bay, to create a Bay Area center for science, technology, engineering and math at the school’s Hayward campus.
Biotech landlord Wareham Development, based in Emeryville, also donated $150,000 to the center over three years.
So-called STEM education has been a major push of Cal State, East Bay, and its president, Mohammad Qayoumi, as the school works to develop the region’s current and future workforce.
“When it comes to improving STEM eduation, the center will be able to work on multiple tracks to really effect change,” Qayoumi said in a press release as the three-year grant was announced Wednesday morning.
The $540,000 grant from the Bayer USA Foundation will establish the Bayer executive directorship at the center and allow the school to begin helping K-12 teachers focus on STEM education.
The center will become a focal point of a region-wide effort to build on and expand job-training models like Biotech Partners, which was started by the City of Berkeley and Bayer, and MESA, or Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement. Officials also expect the STEM center to expose more K-12 students to potential science, technology, engineering and mathematics careers.
“With its grant, Bayer is deepening its investment in STEM education in an area of the country that is of major importance to our biotechnology business and the company as a whole,” said Greg Babe, president and CEO of Bayer Corp. and president of the Bayer USA Foundation.
Bayer has manufacturing operations in Berkeley and last year set up an American research base in San Francisco’s Mission Bay biotech neighborhood.