The Duke Energy Foundation awarded a grant of $9,750 to the Columbus-based Community Education Coalition and its largest regional initiative, the EcO (Economic Opportunities through Education) Network of Southeast Indiana.

The funds will support the regional EcO Champion Network and the EcO Attainment Network to focus on initiatives that will increase awareness of STEM careers in manufacturing, health care and information technology, and increase the pipeline of students enrolling and completing programs that support these careers.

“This grant will support regional strategies to help more students move up at least one level in their education, training, and/or job placement through education pathways that support the needs of our region’s employers,” said John Burnett, president and CEO of the Community Education Coalition.