NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), a leading provider of retirement plans for educators, announced today that Angela Weston and Karen Mathews, two teachers at Grant C. Madill Elementary School in Ogdensburg, New York, won the third place grant award in the company’s annual Voya Unsung Heroes program.
Through the Voya Unsung Heroes program, Voya awards $2,000 grants to 50 K-12 educators across the country each year to support their innovative and creative teaching ideas. Voya also selects three top winners to receive additional funds. In its 20-plus years, the program has awarded more than $5 million in grants to educators across the United States.
As the third-place winners, Weston and Mathews will receive $5,000 in addition to the $2,000 grant — bringing their total financial award to $7,000. This money will be used to help bring “Innovations Lab” to life at Grant C. Madill Elementary School.
“We are thrilled to recognize our nation’s educators who go above and beyond, even through the most challenging times, to make a difference in the lives of our leaders of tomorrow,” said Heather Lavallee, president of Tax Exempt Markets for Voya’s Retirement business. “For more than 20 years, Voya’s Unsung Heroes program has empowered educators, like Angela and Karen, to bring innovative teaching ideas to life. We are honored to recognize them as our 2020 third-place winners and hope that they continue to be an example as they prepare our next generation of leaders for the 21st century workforce.”
Weston and Mathews’ innovative teaching idea, “Innovations Lab,” focuses on gaining a deep understanding of the STEM standards through project-based learning. They would like to make innovative labs by stocking their current science lab and individual classrooms with educational tools that are related to 3D printing, robotics, coding, virtual and augmented reality, electronics and circuitry, and/or engineering and design. The goal would be to provide 300+ students with opportunities for hands-on learning experiences that would prepare them for future STEM careers.
“Angela and Karen are committed to their students and the field of education,” said Grant C. Madill Elementary School Principal Amy Disilva. “They go above and beyond to provide their students with resources to help them be successful. Their dedication to Madill is seen in every aspect of their teaching.”
Weston and Mathews plan to use the Voya grant to purchase tools that will enable students to explore and learn the core technologies that matter most for business as they progress through their educational experience.
To learn more about this year’s winning projects, as well as those from previous years, visit Unsung Heroes (unsungheroes.com). Applications for the 2020 Voya Unsung Heroes awards are currently being accepted through the website until April 30, 2021.
Unsung Heroes is part of Voya Foundation’s signature program, Voya Teacher Voices. Voya Teacher Voices focuses on empowering teachers to become leaders by promoting the teaching career, recognizing high-achieving accomplishments, providing training opportunities and offering financial support to achieve their goals.
About Voya Foundation
Voya Foundation's mission is to improve the quality of life in communities where Voya Financial operates and its employees and customers live. Voya Foundation provides grants and establishes signature partnerships in the areas of financial literacy and children's education and fosters employee engagement to deepen our positive impact on the community. For more information, visit www.VoyaFoundation.com
About Voya Financial®
Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), helps Americans plan, invest and protect their savings — to get ready to retire better. Serving the financial needs of approximately 13.8 million individual and institutional customers in the United States, Voya is a Fortune 500 company that had $7.5 billion in revenue in 2019. The company had $606 billion in total assets under management and administration as of June 30, 2020. With a clear mission to make a secure financial future possible — one person, one family, one institution at a time — Voya’s vision is to be America’s Retirement Company®. Certified as a “Great Place to Work” by the Great Place to Work® Institute, Voya is equally committed to conducting business in a way that is socially, environmentally, economically and ethically responsible. Voya has been recognized as a 2020 World’s Most Admired Company by Fortune magazine; one of the 2020 World’s Most Ethical Companies® by the Ethisphere Institute; as a member of the Bloomberg Gender Equality Index; and as a “Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion” on the Disability Equality Index by Disability:IN. For more information, visit voya.com. Follow Voya Financial on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter @Voya.