Science Kits for Public Libraries (SKPL) is a project of your IEEE-Chicago Section, that offers grants of up to $2,000 to Chicago area public libraries to develop and circulate math and science collections for pre-university students (K-12). The mission of the SKPL is to inspire and engage children in a lifelong pursuit of scientific discovery. Many of the children benefiting from the program find SKPL as the only available option for extra curricular science activities, outside their regular school setting.

Boy with a science kitThanks to the donations of IEEE – Chicago Section members like you, the “Science Kits for Public Libraries“ project has had another successful year. At Libraries in Glenside, Blue Island, Franklin Park, Lemont and DesPlaines; young patrons will now be able to check out a science kit just like a book.

To give you a better idea of the positive impact of your donations, here is an excerpt from the Blue
Island Public library grant application:

“Blue Island Public library serves a community of approximately twenty-four thousand. The community includes one high school, two middle schools, and six elementary schools. Additionally, the library is patronized by members of neighboring communities and students from the schools in the surrounding area. Thirty seven percent of Blue Island’s children live below the poverty line; nearly twice the State average. Many residents do not have access to computers or the internet in their homes. Our patrons desire a hands-on approach to science and technology; one that they all too often cannot get at home or at school. With a mind to supplementing our existing efforts, we intend to provide five science kits for circulation. Each kit will be themed around a significant scientist or innovator and include instructions and supplies needed to complete projects in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics.”

With over 200 Public Libraries in the territory of the Chicago Section we still have a long way to go. Our goal for 2017 is to add 5 more libraries to the growing list of grant participants at a cost of $10,000. Please join me in helping Chicago area public libraries ignite a passion for math and science among pre-university students by making a tax- deductible donation to the IEEE Chicago Section Fund, a restricted fund of the IEEE Foundation. Consider the following:

  • $25 will fund a cross section model of the Earth
  • $50 will fund a 75 in One Electronics Lab
  • $70 will fund an Arduino Computer programming starter kit
  • $200 will fund a Van de Graff Generator
  • $2,000 will fund a collection of science kits (5 to 20 kits)

Donations can be made online at or by sending a check, payable to the IEEE-Chicago Section Fund of the IEEE Foundation a to:

IEEE Foundation,
445 Hoes Lane
Piscataway, NJ 08854, U.S.A.