Lab Dedication at Philadelphia Cristo Rey High School

Legacy Grants

The Avantor Foundation wanted to help make a bigger impact. As a result, it looked for opportunities to provide larger grants to worthy organizations aligned with its mission. In 2012, the Avantor Foundation gave its 50th grant of over $130,000 to the Philadelphia Cristo Rey High School to build a science lab for its students. The Foundation continued to give larger grants to support other worthy causes such as helping rebuild the science curriculum in Moore, Oklahoma following the tornado.

Philadelphia Cristo Rey High School

In 2012, the Avantor Foundation gave its 50th grant of over $130,000 to the Philadelphia Cristo Rey High School to build its 9th grade science lab. It is our hope that this science lab will not only foster exploration among students during their high school years, but also inspire them to become the science leaders of tomorrow. The science lab features student work stations that are conducive to chemistry and physical science lessons, glass front cabinets and custom designed chairs for the work stations.

Moore, OK Public Schools

In 2013, the Avantor Foundation donated $50,000 to the Moore Public Schools in response to the devastating tornados in Moore, Oklahoma. This donation helped rebuild their science programs at Briarwood Elementary, Plaza Towers Elementary, and Highland East Junior High School.

U.S. Naval Academy

In 2015, the VWR Foundation awarded the U.S. Naval Academy with a $50,000 donation to support their Girls-Only STEM Programs. A tremendous amount of energy and intense effort have been directed at recruiting women to choose STEM majors in college. Workshops are offered throughout the year for middle-school age girls to participate in a variety of hands-on STEM activities and interact with female U.S. Naval Academy faculty and midshipmen. The U.S. Naval Academy wants to ensure these female students continue their STEM educations well past middle and high school.

Quench and Connect

In 2015, the Avantor Foundation awarded Quench and Connect with a $20,000 donation in support of their Uganda Science Education Project. Quench and Connect, along with the Avantor Foundation’s support, empowers schools to teach science. St. Dominic’s Secondary School in Masindi, Uganda was struggling with community support until Quench and Connect became involved. In December 2014, Quench provided a water well on campus and not only has student health markedly improved, they are ready to study! The $20,000 grant from the Avantor Foundation provides all the teaching tools and reagents for the chemistry and physics curriculum at St. Dominic’s School.

“We at Quench and Connect are very grateful for grant funds awarded by the Avantor Foundation that support an important component of our work in Central East Africa. Our mission at Quench and Connect is to provide clean water and educational tools to promote academic achievement at secondary schools in Uganda. After we have furnished clean water by drilling a borehole well on the campus, students are healthy and ready to learn. However, there are significant challenges for learning science. Of the 27 major universities in Uganda, only six teach science. The ministry of education requires science teaching in high schools, but the schools lack the reagents and equipment to teach laboratory curricula. Students cannot learn biology, chemistry or physics without ‘hands-on’ laboratory experience. Funds from the Avantor Foundation allow the teachers at our project schools to buy the reagents, small equipment, textbooks and computers that they need to teach these lab courses. The items are purchased from Ugandan vendors, also stimulating local economies. Thousands of students will be introduced to science in Uganda, and from these students, the future leaders of science, engineering and health sciences, will emerge in this stable and promising nation.”

Kathryn R. Ely, PhD, Executive Director of Quench and Connect

The Scripps Research Institute

In 2016, the VWR Foundation awarded The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) in La Jolla, CA, with a $65,000 Legacy Grant to build a VWR Foundation Community Teaching Lab. This lab will serve as the primary location for TSRI teachers and students to perform hands-on scientific demonstrations, including training for new graduate students on basic molecular and cellular biology techniques. TSRI emphasizes the creation of basic knowledge in the biosciences and the education and training of researchers preparing to meet the scientific challenges of the future.

West Virginia State University Foundation

In 2016, the VWR Foundation awarded a $25,000 Legacy Grant to the West Virginia State University Foundation in response to severe flooding that destroyed Herbert Hoover High School, Richwood Middle School and Summersville Middle School in West Virginia. The grant dollars will be used to rebuild the science program at these schools by replacing furniture, equipment and supplies lost due to damage sustained from the flooding.

"With the help of the VWR Foundation, students throughout the Clendenin, WV area will receive a strong STEM education experience. The laboratory experiences these students receive will help them become the future STEM leaders of tomorrow. We would not have been able to rebuild the science labs nearly as fast without the Foundation's help. Generations of students, the schools, and the region owe a debt of gratitude to the generosity of the VWR Foundation."

- Mike Fultz, Associate Professor of Chemistry at West Virginia State University