IXL is built on a foundation of partnerships beginning with academic departments and extending into the wider community. IXL partners with UMBC Faculty to develop courses for our Youth Programs and Summer Enrichment Academy, hires faculty and graduate students to teach for our Test Prep Academy and works with Departments to meet the regions workforce demands for Certificate programs.
IXL has fostered relationships with local community partners like How Girls Code (HGC), (a local organization providing computer science and engineering education designed to inspire young girls) to bring 180 girls from 3rd – 9th grades across the region for two, week long camp workshops. Girls in the program challenge their minds through coding and robotics while nurturing their bodies through meditation and yoga. UMBC faculty from the College of Engineering and Information Technology worked closely with HGC to develop curriculum and evaluation of program efficacy. This partnership was originally supported partially through a UMBC grant from the NSA and has continued even after the funding concluded.
Working with TouchPoint Baltimore at Mondawmin, IXL’s Youth Programs has provided a free Chess Academy for middle and high school ages youth from low-income communities in West Baltimore. The UMBC Chess Team and Grand Master Champion, Tanguy Ringoir, worked with students over 4 weeks to learn the rules, strategy, tactics, and endgames, as well as, study the game play of top master chess champions.
Companies like Interclypse, Potomac Photonics Inc, and Northrop Grumman partner with IXL to develop curriculum and create opportunities for students to go deeper in their exploration of the STEM fields. The Maryland Leadership Workshop is also sponsored by UMBC’s Institute of Extended Learning to bring over 350 middle and high school students onto UMBC’s campus providing young people from every county in Maryland with the leadership skills and experience they need to be successful in their community.
Thirty percent of slots for the How Girls Code camp workshops are eligible for needs based scholarship, including Free And Reduced Meals (FARM) scholarships that cover 80% of tuition. The UMBC Education Department also offers 20 community youth full merit based scholarships from schools where UMBC student teachers are placed. In addition, scholarships and partnerships with the UMB Cures Scholars program, Baltimore Education Student Trust, the Flaherty Family Foundation and the Community Foundation of Howard County all partner with IXL to give youth from low income communities, the opportunity to participate in UMBC’s Summer Enrichment Academy summer courses.