- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 3, 2018

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois Bicentennial coordinators will award 25 schools across the state a three-year technology program as a legacy project of the Prairie State’s 200th birthday.

Officials said Tuesday the program will come from the renowned Fusion program of the Illinois Math and Science Academy in Aurora. It’s a unique curriculum for middle school teachers aimed at encouraging students in 4th through 8th grades to study math and science. Those students are apt to pursue careers in technology, medicine, education and business.

Applications for IMSA Fusion are due April 13. Awards will be based on a school’s underserved population and commitment to making Fusion a part of the school day.

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Wintrust and Abbott are presenting sponsors. Additional funding is from Boeing, Ingredion and Motorola.

Illinois celebrates its bicentennial on Dec. 3 .

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