T.D. Jakes Foundation Weekly Updates – May 26, 2020

May 26, 2020

To help you navigate these uncertain times, we’ve compiled timely news and resources related to small business, education and connectivity. We hope this provides both information and comfort as we continue to weather these challenges.

T.D. Jakes Foundation in Action

The T.D. Jakes Foundation has launched a first-of-its-kind virtual STEAM summer academy. A free, five-week summer program, STEAM Academy 2020 is open to Dallas County students, age five to 16 and will run from the week of June 15 to July 13, with three-to-four hours of online instruction per week. Visit our website to register and learn more.

As part of our Take Five series, Serita Acker, Executive Director of Programs for Educational Enrichment and Retention and Women in Science and Engineering at Clemson University, explains why people of color have to overcome several pervasive obstacles to pursue STEAM careers and what she is doing to help attract and retain students from underserved communities on an ongoing basis and especially during the pandemic.

Are you a displaced worker looking for job opportunities? We’ve compiled job opportunities in essential sectors such as grocery and drug stores and restaurants, along with remote opportunities in technology. Find them here.

Owning a business is never easy, but it’s even more challenging now, with so many owners unable to meet overhead or pay salaries. Click here to learn more about the resources available to small-business owners.

Need assistance?

Looking for work? Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson, along with Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas, is hoping to help some of the 2 million Texans who are out of work. On June 3 and 4, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., they are hosting a virtual job fair, where they hope to feature as many as 40 employers who are hiring. Job seekers can pre-register here.

Don’t know what assistance is available to unemployed Americans? You’re not alone. A survey from Credit Karma found that 80% of unemployed Americans say they haven’t reached out for relief because they think they don’t qualify or are overwhelmed by all the information. Read this CNBC story to learn what you might qualify for.

Addressing the digital divide

Though the coronavirus bill recently passed by the U.S. House of Representatives appears DOA, the package attempts to close the digital divide, providing $4 billion in broadband support for low-income Americans and those who recently lost their jobs, and another $1.5 billion for schools and libraries to upgrade their connectivity and purchase more equipment. Despite the disagreement on the bill, there is wide bipartisan support for broadband funding. Read more here.

For Stefanie Sanford, Chief of Global Policy and External Relations at the College Board, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the digital divide into stark focus. She outlines some of the key lessons she learned about access. They include hardware is easy, but reliable internet is tough; a keyboard is not a classroom; and social media savvy does not mean tech savvy, among others. Read about it here.

More work to be done

More women are running America’s largest companies than ever before. According to Fortune, 37 women are running Fortune 500 companies, up from 33 last year. However, only three women on the list are women of color and not one of the 500 companies had a black woman at the helm.

Education updates

Like all school districts, the Dallas Independent School District is still determining whether it will be safe for students to return to their classrooms in the fall. Dallas ISD Superintendent Dr. Michael Hinojosa said that he’s 75% confident that students will physically return to school in August. As an alternative, the district is also discussing a blended model of in-classroom and at-home learning. Read the story here.

Together, we can and will get through this.

Hattie Hill
President & CEO
T.D. Jakes Foundation


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