From Data Hotspots to Virtual Museum Visits: How Booz Allen Supports Remote Learning During COVID-19

Aug 6, 2020 9:00 AM ET
Campaign: S.T.E.M.
Booz Allen employees participate in learning activity with school children.

From an education-focused Data Science Bowl to virtual family read alongs, Booz Allen has helped keep students – from early childhood to college – connected and learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

During the summer, and as schools determine learning plans for the fall, the firm continues to provide support and powerful community partnerships - all to foster remote learning opportunities, address immediate technology needs and engage tomorrow’s tech talent. 

Bridging the digital divide in the District of Columbia 

As the COVID-19 pandemic shifted education away from traditional classrooms to remote learning, it became clear that not all households have the equipment or connectivity to participate. By expanding its Empowered Learners Initiative, the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) is working toward equitable technology access for students in grades 3-12. 

The initiative includes over 16,000 free devices for families with no devices at home and access to the school district’s online tools like Office 365. Booz Allen is providing another critical resource: connectivity. Through a $75,000 donation to the DC Education Fund, the firm is funding 400 hotspots with unlimited data to help students learn from home.

“Through Booz Allen Hamilton’s support, DCPS is closing the digital divide, one student at a time,” said Jeanie Lee, DC Education Fund Executive Director.

Virtually inspiring future innovators 

Like many other cultural and educational institutions worldwide that were forced to temporarily close their doors due to COVID-19, National Children’s Museum in D.C. has continued learning and exploration through virtual programs.

The Museum partnered with Booz Allen to launch a daily, digital series that celebrates all things STEAM – science, technology, engineering, arts, and math. The #STEAMwork series features interactive online activities that use everyday materials found at home and in nature, allowing children and their caregivers to conduct experiments, design projects, participate in storytime, and much more. 

Activities include:

  • Climate Action Hero Mondays, projects based on experience within the Museum’s Innovation Sandbox exhibit

  • A Thursday Design + Build challenge that encourages exploration of engineering principles

  • “Playdate with an Expert” sessions with Booz Allen technical experts and STEAM leaders

“At National Children’s Museum, we aim to inspire children to care about and change the world, and we think that mission is more important now than ever,” said Crystal Bowyer, president, and CEO of National Children’s Museum. “We are honored to partner with Booz Allen Hamilton, a leader in the community, to help bring joy and learning to families during this challenging time.”

Connecting Huntsville youth to STEM careers 

The Huntsville Madison County Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s digital STEM learning hub, A Smart Place, provides a daily online learning platform for 54,000 eighth- and ninth-graders. The digital hub provides a career prep curriculum and connects students to occupational videos and work-related courses, and more – with a critical goal: connect the community’s students to technology careers and build Huntsville’s future tech workforce.   

With a donation from the firm, Booz Allen’s Huntsville office is helping A Smart Place become even smarter by expanding the laptop loaner program and increasing access to Wi-Fi during the COVID-19 pandemic—and beyond.

This donation is just part of Booz Allen Huntsville’s commitment to introducing youth in the community to STEM careers. Earlier this year, Scientist Blake Fernandez and Lead Associate Shawn Lester visited Madison City Schools during National Engineering Week to talk with students about STEM careers. The Huntsville office also recently announced the development of its own Innovation Center, which will provide an open, engineering-focused space for firm employees, customers, and future Huntsville tech talent to convene.

Learn more about Booz Allen’s COVID-19 response and innovation at Booz Allen.