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STEM Coding Lab Awarded $635K grant from Richard King Mellon Foundation

Submitted by STEM Coding Lab

PITTSBURGH, PA, January 8, 2024 — STEM Coding Lab (SCL) has been awarded a $635,000 grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation to expand its work in providing computer science (CS) education to under-resourced children in grades K-8 throughout the Pittsburgh region.

This grant will enable SCL to replicate and expand its successful 'CS CreatorSpace' program (dedicated computer science classrooms) in five under-resourced schools, providing CS classes during the school day to 1,000+ students.

The grant will also fuel the growth of SCL’s Asynchronous Computer Science Education System (ACSES), a virtual platform developed in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University, featuring animated videos and classroom resources, designed to extend SCL’s reach beyond urban school districts.

Additionally, the grant will enhance SCL’s organizational capacity to provide in-school and after-school programs across 40+ locations, reaching 4,000+ children, positioning the organization to continue expanding its footprint in a sustainable fashion.

"We are profoundly grateful for the generous grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation which will enable us to expand our student reach, bridge the digital divide, and create enduring pathways to success for all our underserved children. Our heartfelt thanks to the Richard King Mellon Foundation for their steadfast commitment to SCL and our community's collective future." Said Viv Penninti, Founder and Chairman of STEM Coding Lab.

Casey Mindlin, Executive Director of STEM Coding Lab, adds: "This is a pivotal moment for STEM Coding Lab. During a time in which all kids must have access to STEM and computer science instruction, the Richard King Mellon Foundation has yet again proven itself to be a champion for youth throughout Southwestern PA. We are deeply grateful for this generous demonstration of support.”

About STEM Coding Lab:
STEM Coding Lab is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 2017, with the mission of providing under-resourced K-8 children with the computer skills needed to succeed in a digital economy. Using both online and in-person delivery formats, STEM Coding Lab provides instruction during the school day, as well as afterschool hours, in basic programming constructs, including web design, app design, game design, robotics and other introductory courses. Serving nearly 3,000 students, STEM Coding Lab currently provides 120 classes every week across 38 different school districts and community institutions throughout Allegheny County. For more information, please visit our website at or email

About the Richard King Mellon Foundation:
Founded in 1947, the Richard King Mellon Foundation is the largest foundation in Southwestern Pennsylvania, and one of the 50 largest in the world. The Foundation's 2021 year-end net assets were $3.4 billion, and its Trustees in 2021 disbursed $152 million in grants and Program-Related Investments. The Foundation focuses its funding on six primary program areas, delineated in its 2021-2030 Strategic Plan.

Contact: Casey Mindlin, STEM Coding Lab, 412-426-3523;