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LPS Foundation Grants Deliver Life (and Knife) Skills

Littleton Public Schools kitchen managers cutting up vegetables in purple shirts and black aprons

Recent grants awarded to the Littleton Public Schools Foundation are affording students at the Explorative Pathways for Innovative Careers (EPIC) campus a variety of hands-on learning opportunities, and LPS Nutrition Services personnel got a culinary boost from nonprofit partner Nourish Colorado.  

A $100,000 grant for EPIC from the City of Centennial’s Stadium District Funding will provide:

  • Industry Certifications: Each EPIC student is offered the opportunity to take industry certification exams. The grant will help pay for the exams, which range from $50 to $200.
  • Course Fees: Because of the specialized nature of EPIC classes, every course has fees that are traditionally passed on to the student ($25 - $250 per semester). This grant will help offset those fees.
  • Uniforms: Students are required to wear uniform shirts while on the EPIC campus to promote community and collaboration. This grant will give students a second shirt.
  • Paid Internships: EPIC works with industry partners and schools to provide internships for students. Not all partners have funds to pay for interns. With this grant, 60 students will be able to participate in a paid internship.
  • Intergenerational Connectivity: $5,000 from the grant will seed a program for adult learning that partners seniors from our community with EPIC students.

An additional $5,000 grant from The Schramm Foundation will bring a beekeeping class to the EPIC campus this summer. Instructor Mike Montgomery, the Natural Pathways Lead, has already procured two active beehives and is gathering supplies for this innovative offering, which will give students a firsthand experience in the art of overseeing an apiary. 

Within LPS Nutrition Services, a $4,000 grant from a generous funder provided 70 employees with a 90-minute culinary skills session from the expert chefs at Nourish Colorado. The training offered LPS food service leads with the knife skills needed to handle fresh, locally sourced ingredients and take that knowledge back to their own school kitchens. One participant noted: “This training is amazing because everybody in the kitchen comes from different backgrounds. And the trainers suggested some cool vegetable cooking/pickling ideas I hope we can implement in our kitchens every week to offer variety.”

We’ll share further updates about how these grants are benefiting students in the coming months. (And we might even ask for some honey from our newest, buzziest friends at EPIC!)