Listen to This Exclusive Interview with Bretta Blanton
Executive Director of Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow
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At Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, we are atypical, because we make educational opportunities available to those who are usually overlooked. Our goal is to provide science education to all who are in need, both here in America and abroad.
Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Inc. is a nonprofit organization. Our board of directors is comprised entirely of educators who have taught at both the college and high school levels. The CEO of Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Dr. Bretta Blanton, has a very extensive science background- over 23 years of experience as a chemist. Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Inc. offers many services to the community:
1. College scholarships that are not necessarily based upon GPA but mainly upon character and/or potential
2. Paid science internships, for ages 14-114! These internships can lead to publication opportunities.
3. Science bowls/contests for the community – both students and non students. Our science bowls/contests offer cash prizes, and ages 16 to 116 are eligible to participate. There is a novice division (no experience to minimal experience), an intermediate division and an expert division. We particularly love to host these contests in disadvantaged communities.
The main aspirations of Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Inc. are both to educate the public and to encourage the public to gain a love and appreciation for science. Moreover, at Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Inc. we understand that human beings are to be caretakers of the Earth. Therefore, many of our research projects revolve around environmentalism and/or are environmentally friendly.
Dr. Bretta Blanton has long possessed a passion for science as well as for science education. As a result, the majority of her life has been spent either tutoring or teaching chemistry, physics, and/or various disciplines of mathematics. It is Dr. Blanton’s ambition to make a difference via using science as a means to fix some of the world’s problems; and through training others to use science in a positive manner.
Through her experience as an educator, Dr. Blanton noticed that too many students, especially those from disadvantaged communities, were being ‘tossed by the wayside’- when it came to the sciences. These students were either being discouraged from taking certain science classes, or they were being ‘passed’ from class to class without having gained the proper knowledge. It is Dr. Blanton’s belief that science is for everyone. Therefore, it is her passion to promote science literacy for all, i.e. to make such opportunities available to the ‘masses’. Thus, she founded Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow Inc, 501 c (3) – which offers such opportunities.
There are many organizations who offer science bowls, scholarships, internships, and an online school. However, we at Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Inc. are atypical, because we make these opportunities available to those who are usually overlooked. Our goal is to provide science education to all who are in need, both here in America and abroad.
Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow Inc. (BST) is a multifaceted organization. At BST, our primary focus is not only to provide education but also to offer ‘cures’ for math and science phobias. We strive to awaken the scientific genius in people of all walks of life- not just students; because, science is for everyone. So, the main aspirations of Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow, Inc. are to educate the public, to reduce the science illiteracy rate, and to encourage the public to gain a love and appreciation for science.
In 2010, the Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow Cash Award for science majors was offered. Applicants had to write an essay along with their application. The winner was selected based upon character, level of financial need, and the quality of his/her essay. This award was to be used as a supplement for school-related expenses.
Additionally, we have incorporated the Chemistry Student of the Year Award, a cash award funded through Brilliant Scientists of Tomorrow. This award is for Fourth year Chemistry students, and its aim is to help to increase the retention rate of chemistry majors. The first award was offered at the University of Malawi. Typically, at the University of Malawi, during the First year, there can be up to two hundred students enrolled in chemistry. However, by the Fourth year, there are usually less than five chemistry majors.
BST has also funded six departmental teaching assistants (TA) for the University of Malawi. One of the main problems in Malawi is overcrowded class rooms- even at the college level. And, there are only six chemistry faculty. As a result, the faculty has all of its time consumed by grading. Consequently, it is very difficult for them to be able to publish and/or to participate in scholarly activities.
Dr. Blanton has also hosted several workshops in Malawi, through BST, that are aimed at getting more women into the sciences as well as making the general public to feel comfortable with chemistry.
BRILLIANT SCIENTISTS OF TOMORROW, INC. | 5100 Poplar Ave; Suite 2700 Memphis, TN 38137