Yext Founders Give Back to Thomas Jefferson High School to Support STEM Education

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tjhsst_black (1)Today, Yext announced a donation to the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Fairfax County, Virginia. The school (referred to as “TJ” by those in the community) has a renowned STEM-focused education program, and has consistently been ranked the #1 high school in the country. Yext’s gift will be used to support the school’s “Yext Computer Systems Lab,” where senior students can conduct independent study in computer systems and software. The donation will allow the school to obtain specialized research equipment for the lab and support other unique student learning opportunities. TJ’s Research Labs boast university-caliber research equipment and resources, and are one of its major differentiators solidifying its status as a top STEM institution.

This donation is particularly special as TJ is both my alma mater and the school where I met my founding Yext members Brent Metz, Tom Dixon (COO), Sean MacIsaac (CTO), Alok Bhushan (EVP of Finance), and Kevin Caffrey (Principal Engineer). I know I speak for all of us when I say that we are where we are today because of the STEM education, opportunities, and experiences that TJ provided for us at a young age. It was at TJ where Tom, Sean, Alok and I found others who were passionate about computers, the Internet, and learned to always question the status quo and never be afraid to push boundaries, which has been instrumental in our entrepreneurial success.

Howard and Brent Metz TJ Vintage

While at TJ, Howard Lerman commissioned Brent Metz (Yext co-founder and fellow TJ student) to build his first website for $100. Here he is giving Brent his first dollar.

Supporting STEM education in the United States is critical, as jobs in STEM are essential to innovation and our economic progress. Though opportunities in STEM-related jobs are increasing at an unprecedented rate, the amount of students graduating with STEM degrees remains stagnant. We’ve got to get students excited about science, technology, engineering, and math while they’re young — encouraging them to pursue STEM further in their education, and eventually in their careers. STEM programs can be costly, and donating resources is one of the most effective way to ensure that US students in the STEM studies receive the best education possible, setting them on the path for career success.

We’re proud to donate the new Yext Computer Systems Lab that will inspire the next generation of brilliant minds and show TJ students that with a STEM education, anything is possible.

Onward,

Howard


Yext Computer Systems Lab “Unveiling” 

On Wednesday, May 4th, Howard, Tom, Sean, Alok, and Kevin visited the TJ campus for the official “Yext Computer Systems Lab” unveiling event, complete with ribbon cutting, and spent the afternoon networking with students and faculty members involved in the Yext Computer Systems Lab.

TJ Ribbon Cutting

In addition to the monetary investment, the Yext executive team members frequently donate their time for special school initiatives and programs, including serving as mentors at the annual HackTJ and tjSTAR events. Yext also holds a special event each year for TJ students at the company’s headquarters in New York City.

You can visit TJ’s website to learn more about Thomas Jefferson High School’s Partnership Fund, and how you can donate today!

Click here to read the full press release.

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