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Toyota Puts the “Car” in “CARE-riculum”: Cruising Into Arizona Schools with a $9.3 Million STEM Boost

CHANDLER, Ariz. – March 5, 2024 – In a high-octane move to rev up education, the Toyota USA Foundation has turbocharged Chandler and Tempe schools with a jaw-dropping grant of up to $9.3 million. This cash injection is set to transform local education, preparing students for a future faster than a zero-to-sixty sprint in a sports car, all part of the foundation’s Driving Possibilities initiative.

“Accelerating into the future, our mission is to fuel passion for STEM careers amongst the youth, ensuring our programs in Chandler and Tempe are built to last longer than our most durable models,” stated Tellis Bethel, group vice president of social innovation at Toyota. With an initial rollout of nearly $2 million in the tank for the first year, the initiative is revving up for a marathon rather than a sprint, promising to expand its footprint in the Phoenix area.

Driving Possibilities aims to be the vehicle for change, providing PreK-12 students with the tools to navigate the road to success in science, technology, engineering, and math. This program doesn’t just stop at education; it’s designed to ensure students and their families have access to the resources they need to keep their engines running smoothly.

Scott Cooke, the president and CEO of Toyota Financial Services, reflected on the company’s long history of community engagement in Chandler since 2001, highlighting the pride Toyota feels in supporting the educators of Tempe and Chandler. “It’s our way of giving back to the community that has been our home for over two decades, powering the dreams of young minds eager to explore the highways of possibility,” Cooke said.

This latest announcement marks a significant milestone in the STEM Curriculum Pathway for elementary and middle school students, also paving the way for community resource centers. These hubs will provide after-school programs and essential services, ensuring that the community’s needs are met both in and out of the classroom.

Launched in 2022, Driving Possibilities is Toyota’s flagship national initiative, designed to prepare today’s youth for tomorrow’s careers. Funded by the Toyota USA Foundation alongside Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) and Toyota Financial Services (TFS), this initiative represents Toyota’s largest and most comprehensive commitment to education to date.

As the sixth site to roll out the Driving Possibilities programming, Chandler and Tempe join a growing list of communities across the U.S. benefiting from Toyota’s over 60 years of commitment to supporting education. Modeled after the success seen in West Dallas, the initiative is geared up to drive change, proving that when it comes to education, Toyota is more than just a car company; they’re a forward-moving force for the future of our children.

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