Grupo Guayacán, a nonprofit with more than 10 years of experience in entrepreneurial development programs, on Tuesday gathered more than 500 students to encourage careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) and entrepreneurship as part of the kickoff of a new educational initiative aimed at high school students.
“With this initiative, in collaboration with Amgen Foundation, we look forward to providing young students the necessary tools they need to discover entrepreneurship and STEM disciplines as professional alternatives with great potential and to motivate them to adopt a global entrepreneurial mindset,” said Laura Cantero, executive director of Grupo Guayacán.
The students from José Collazo Colón and Isabel Flores high schools, both located in Juncos, are part of the initiative “STEM and Entrepreneurship” in affiliation with Amgen Foundation. The Foundation’s goal is to inspire the next generation of innovators and invest in bettering their surrounding communitites.
Through partnerships with local entrepreneurs and distinguished professors in STEM disciplines, the program will offer educational workshops and mentoring in order for students to learn about the exceptional career opportunities STEM disciplines and entrepreneurship can offer.
The main objective is to increase the pipeline of talented youth interested in STEM careers and increase their interest in entrepreneurship, Guayacán executives said.
The high schoolers had the opportunity to listen to inspiring stories from scientists and entrepreneurs in STEM disciplines. The speakers were Ada Monzón, meteorologist and founder of the EcoExploratorio Museum, Madalis Casiano, scientist in charge of Amgen’s Process Development division, José Nolla, founder of E-Farm, Maricarmen Vargas, founder of Electronic Sports, and Felipe Albors, co-founder of T-Minus. The last three are graduates of GGI’s entrepreneurial development programs including I-Corps and EnterPRize.
Through the initiative, Grupo Guayacán seeks to expand entrepreneurship to high school students and teachers and encourage them to become drivers of economic and social value creation in Puerto Rico.