The cultural impact of Black Panther may extend even further than fans originally hoped for.
On Monday, Disney announced that it would be donating $1 million to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America to build new science, technology, engineering and math centers in director Ryan Coogler’s hometown of Oakland, Calif., as well as locations in Atlanta; Baltimore; Chicago; Harlem; Memphis, Tenn.; New Orleans; Washington D.C.; Philadelphia; and Watts, Calif.
Anyone who has seen the movie will surely note how life imitates art with the initiative, which will bring STEM Centers of Innovation to these locations, enabling local kids to follow in the footsteps of Shuri, the film’s STEM genius and little sister to the Black Panther, T’Challa.
As SyFy reports, centers will include “3-D printers, robotics, high-definition video production and conferencing equipment.” Kids will also have access to a “fully dedicated STEM expert” to provide individual and group guidance.
In a statement announcing the donation (which, it should be noted, is chump change in comparison with the film’s 10-day global box-office gross), Disney CEO Robert Iger said, “It is thrilling to see how inspired young audiences were by the spectacular technology in the film.
“It’s fitting that we show our appreciation by helping advance STEM programs for youth,” he explained, “especially in underserved areas of the country to give them the knowledge and tools to build the future they want.”