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Rhode Island Foundation Blog


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Seizing opportunities to learn and grow
By Connie Grosch / June 21, 2017 /   Loading Disqus...
As I enter Nathanael Greene Middle School on this June morning that happens to be eighth-grade graduation day, a large poster that proclaims “Dream It, Achieve It” greets me outside the auditorium.

Nathanael Greene Principal Dr. Nicole Mathis congratulates the students and reminds them that in a few short hours they will officially be “high-schoolers,” ready to take on more responsibility for their educational goals, seizing opportunities to learn and grow.

That’s exactly the message we hope to reinforce, as we present the students with a screening of Hidden Figures, the story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who play a vital role in NASA during the early years of the U.S. space program.

20th Century Fox refers to the women as “the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race, and galvanized the world. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big.”

The Foundation, working through the Providence Public School Department, is sponsoring the film at all seven public middle schools in Providence with all showings prior to the end of the academic year. Foundation staff members, including President & CEO Neil Steinberg, are joining students at many of the screenings.
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