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Project Exploration

  • Project Exploration
  • 4511 South Evans
  • Chicago, IL 60653
  • 312-273-4026
  • 1999

Program Description

Project Exploration is a nonprofit science education organization that works to ensure communities traditionally overlooked by science - particularly minority youth and girls - have access to personalized experiences with science and scientists.

We seek to expand access to science. Our youth programs impact the lives of hundreds of students each year by fostering a long-term involvement in science, and are supported by public programs that provide a window into science in action through exhibits, online initiatives, and contributions to the field of science in out-of-school time.

Project Exploration targets 6th through 12th grade Chicago Public School students who are open-minded and curious, regardless of academic or economic standing, and gives them the opportunity to explore a variety of scientific disciplines alongside scientists.

We offer year-round after-school programs and multi-week immersive summer experiences. Our highly-personalized approach includes hands-on programming alongside scientists, authentic fieldwork, leadership development, and long-term relationships - our motto is, "Once a Project Exploration student, always a Project Exploration student!"

Success Stories

We currently have an alumnus who is in graduate school at Villanova University for environmental engineering. He joined our Junior Paleontologist program in the summer of his 9th grade year. He often states that as a young man he was a "screw-up" and was also involved in a gang. After spending his first summer with us he went on to participate in several other programs both within and outside of Project Exploration. When he decided to attend Cheyney University for college he would return every summer to serve as a teaching assistant for the Junior Paleontologist program. He often attributes his participation in Project Exploration programs as the catalyst for diving more into his studies and pursuing the field of environmental engineering.

Services Provided

  • Career exploration and counseling/internships
  • College admissions guidance and counseling
  • College fairs/campus visits
  • College transition and retention support
  • Community service/service hours
  • Leadership development
  • Mentoring
  • Science, tech, engineering, & math (STEM)

Demographics

Race & Ethnicity

  • White: 3%
  • Asian or Pacific Islander: 1%
  • Hispanic/Latino: 12%
  • Other: 32%
  • African American: 52%

Education Level and
Number of Students

  • High School: 164
  • Middle School: 160
  • Elementary School: 0
  • Post-secondary: 13
  • Non-traditional: 0

Populations Served

  • Academically At-risk
  • Academically High-performing
  • ESL Students
  • Undocumented Students (3)

First-Generation

  • Less than 25%

Representative
Colleges Attended
by Alumni

  • Cheyney University of Pennsylvania
  • City Colleges of Chicago-Harold Washington College
  • Dartmouth College
  • DePaul University
  • Hampton University
  • Jarvis Christian College
  • Kentucky State University
  • Loyola University Chicago
  • Montana State University
  • Northeastern Illinois University
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Southern Illinois University-Carbondale
  • Tennessee State University
  • The College of Wooster
  • Trinity College
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Villanova University

Matriculation & Completion

  • 4-yr College Matriculation: 50%