• renowned support for the BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA
  • committed to improving EDUCATION for all children
  • CHESS CLUB & SCHOLASTIC CENTER OF SAINT LOUIS
  • visionaries behind MIZZOU NEW MUSIC INITIATIVE

First-ever Invention Jamboree introduces
Scouts to new technologies and tools

by Dean Minderman

Nearly 400 Scouts, adult leaders and volunteers from Missouri and Kansas attended the first-ever Invention Jamboree presented by the Great Rivers Council of the Boy Scouts of America from Friday, September 13 through Sunday, September 15 at the Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation in Gravois Mills, MO.

Taking advantage of the Reservation’s unique features, Scouts who came to the Jamboree got to participate in activities including robotics, welding, blacksmithing, woodworking, graphic design, shooting, climbing, flying radio-controlled drones, conducting search-and-rescue operations using geo-spatial mapping, and more.

All attendees also spent time in the reservation’s Sinquefield Invention Lab, the center of the council’s Invention Campus and Invention Scout program and the only facility of its kind at any Scout camp in the nation.

Experts who were on hand to work with Scouts included professional inventor Steve Goldstein; designer Eric Mosul; Dr. Rob Duncan, former vice chancellor of research at the University of Missouri and currently professor and distinguished chair in physics at Texas Tech; Dr. Annette Sobel, associate professor at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center; and members of the prize-winning robotics team from the FIRST® LASER program at Camdenton High School in Camdenton, MO.

Governor Parson visits the Sinquefield Invention Lab

Missouri Governor Mike Parson also made an appearance at the Invention Jamboree, visiting on Saturday afternoon to observe various activities, meet some of the Scouts and Scout leaders, and even try his hand at operating a radio-controlled aerial drone.

In addition to working directly with Scouts, the guest experts served as judges for the Jamboree’s invention competition. The Scout winner of the competition was Michael Powell of Troop 706 in Columbia, MO, who used CAD software and a 3-D printer to create new designs for “camping beads” collected by Scouts to mark participation in specific campouts and activities. The adult winner was Morgan Dailey of Troop 6, also in Columbia, who used various power and hand tools to build a portable “ladder ball” game.

“The response from everyone who came was overwhelmingly positive,” said Thomas Yang, Invention Scouts Executive and Director of Sinquefield Invention Lab & Program Building. “We think this event is a model for what Scouting can be in the 21st century.” In all, 40 different Scout troops were represented at the event, including eight all-female troops, Yang said, with girls comprising 35% of the total Scout attendance.

With headquarters in Columbia, MO, the Great Rivers Council of Scouts BSA serves youth and adults in 33 counties in central and northeast Missouri. The Council’s Invention Scouts program is made possible by generous support from the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation.

The Invention Jamboree was presented by the Great Rivers Council and co-sponsored by the Missouri Innovation Center and the Buttonwood Business Center, with support from the National Academy of Inventors, VentureWell, ESRI, Saint Louis University Geographic Information Sciences Department, State Technical College of Missouri, and the Midwest Woodworkers Association.

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October 2019
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Scouts to new technologies and tools

Today and Tomorrow Educational Foundation sees 29% increase in scholarship recipients for 2019-20

by Dean Minderman

The Today and Tomorrow Educational Foundation (TTEF) has announced that their “Help For Today – Hope For Tomorrow” scholarship program has seen a 29% increase in the number of recipients for the 2019-20 school year.

TTEF provides need-based tuition assistance scholarships of up to $2,000 per year to families in the city of St. Louis who wish to offer their Kindergarten through 8th grade children a private or parochial elementary school education. The program serves families of all faiths and offers scholarships to children attending both Catholic and non-Catholic schools.

Scholarship awards are based upon financial need and the residency of the applicant. Once awarded, the scholarships follow students through the 8th grade (assuming continued eligibility), and are transferable to any private or parochial elementary school in the city of St. Louis.

Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinqufield have supported TTEF with major leadership gifts every year since the scholarship program began in 2008, most recently contributing $400,000 in 2019. In all, the Sinquefields have invested $4,154,627 over the past ten years in “Help For Today – Hope For Tomorrow.”

A total of 433 students were added to the program this year, bringing the current number of TTEF scholarship recipients to 1,183 students enrolled at 24 different non-public elementary schools in the city of St. Louis.

In all, TTEF in 2019-20 will provide $2,037,729 in scholarship funding to these students, for an average of $1,730 per student. Scholarship recipients live in households with an average size of 4.2 people and an average family annual income of $32,350.

Since the “Help For Today – Hope For Tomorrow” program began, TTEF has awarded $17,938,764 to 3,892 scholarship students. 100% of TTEF alumni have gone on to complete eighth grade, with 91% gaining acceptance to college prep programs in high school, and 87% attending one of those schools. 100% of TTEF alumni have gone on to graduate from high school, with 90% enrolled in some form of post-secondary education.

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October 2019
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Dr. Jeanne Sinquefield writes new book about chess notation

by Dean Minderman

Dr. Jeanne Sinquefield has written a new book about chess notation, Learn to Read and Write Chess.

Published by the World Chess Hall of Fame, the book (pictured) is intended to help players of all ages learn the basics of chess notation. Starting with the fundamentals of piece names, locations, and written move types. the book takes a “hands-on” approach that combines chess reading and writing skills with physically moving pieces.

For her work on the book and her ongoing support of chess, Dr. Sinquefield received a Meritorious Services award from the US Chess Federation at the annual US Chess Awards ceremony held in August in Orlando, FL.

Learn to Read and Write Chess is available now for purchase at the World Chess Hall of Fame and the St. Louis Chess Club. The book also can be downloaded for free in PDF form from the US Chess Trust website. There also are plans to translate the book into more than a dozen foreign languages, which will be made available as free PDF downloads.

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October 2019
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