July 14, 2022


HOUSTON, TX – With over 45 schools in the Clear Creek Independent School District, there’s a lot of potential future engineers and scientists coming through the ranks every year. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for most of these students or their teachers to think these are the only two paths our industry has to offer. Lucky for them, Monument’s partnership with Clear Creek Education Foundation (CCEF) and Clear Creek ISD (CCISD) is on a mission to change that — and a whole lot more.

“Our contribution to the CCEF all started back in 2019 when their Executive Director, Deborah Laine, approached me at a Bay Area Community Advisory Panel meeting,” Kris Sturgul, Bayport Site Leader, explained. “She asked if Monument would be interested in contributing to their STEM programs, and I said, ‘Absolutely!’”

Monument has been contributing monetarily to the foundation’s programs ever since. Each school year, Kris and her team receive a list of CCEF program options to choose from, all of which are submitted by CCISD faculty with an explanation as to why that specific group would benefit from the grant.

“This process is important to these programs, and it’s also really fun for us,” Kris added. “None of the teachers know their program has been chosen until a specific announcement day, complete with a big band, confetti, clappers, and more. CCEF has what’s called the ‘SurPrize Patrol’ that will go around, and each of the contributors presents a giant check to the teacher of the program they chose to support. It’s so touching to see how emotional everyone gets because of how much it means to them. Even in the days afterward, I’ll get messages expressing their gratitude.”

This year, the grant recipients were “STEAM Explorers at Home!” — which will provide 40 take-home kits, including a STEM-related book and a family activity for exploration and tool familiarity, as well as “STEM, Sensory, and Success for all Learners” — which will help students develop critical skills through STEM and sensory activities in a self-contained classroom.

“Monument’s support of STEM grants provides innovative materials that inspire and motivate our students in the classroom,” Deborah shared. “It’s about providing the very best education possible to Clear Creek ISD students, and Monument Chemical is a valuable partner in making that happen.”

And that’s exactly why the team is looking into new ways to evolve the partnership into something even bigger.

“Our Inventory Billing Clerk, Patty Miller, and HR Manager, Chelete Burnett, joined me in meeting with Deborah recently to discuss other ways to get kids interested in math and sciences through potential volunteer and speaking opportunities that education and inspire,” Kris shared. “So many people are surprised to hear that plants are not just looking for chemical engineers; there’s a whole host of great jobs that don’t require a four-year degree. We not only want to educate students on where this type of career can take you, but also help the teachers understand what our industry is all about, so they can continue to share it with the kids.We’re really excited about where our partnership is going.”

“Monument understands that providing the best education to young learners will develop our students into our future leaders and workforce, and our partnership is a great example of collaboration with community partners who truly want to make a difference for our students,” Deborah added. “We’re all working together to inspire educational excellence, and our community will reap the benefits in the coming years.”

About Monument Chemical
Headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, Monument Chemical serves the specialty chemicals industry with locations in the heart of manufacturing hubs in the U.S. and Europe. Monument Chemical produces a variety of solvents, intermediates, specialty fuels, and other specialty products, as well as offer industry-leading Custom Manufacturing services.

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