Science & Math Investigative Learning Experiences (SMILE) is a precollege program at Oregon State University (OSU) supporting out-of-school time learning opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields to increase the academic achievement, persistence, and attainment of students from groups underrepresented in higher education in Oregon.
We are very proud of being honored as a Together for Tomorrow Challenge winner for the 2012 - 2013 school year. The U.S. Department of Education and the Corporation for National and Community Service recognized the sustained support our community-led partnerships provide to struggling schools.
Dr. Miriam Orzech, OSU's Academic Affairs Assistant Vice President, started forming partnerships with school districts in the fall of 1987, in order to address the achievement gap that exists between low income, minority students and their peers in Oregon. In early 1988, the partnerships began afterschool SMILE Clubs for 80 underrepresented and educationally underserved students in four middle schools. Since then the program's reach has increased through partnerships with school districts in areas that are poor, largely rural, and educationally underserved.