iSPACE shutting down permanently as casualty of COVID-19 pandemic conditions

By Chuck Gibson 

CINCINNATI, OH (April 24, 2020) – iSPACE, The Stem Learning Place, announced they are taking steps to permanently close due to the impact of COVID-19 on their teaching programs. 

iSPACE served students, teachers and professionals by teaching them necessary STEM skills to prepare them for the real world through immersive, hands on programs. (Provided) 

The organization released plans to permantenly close through an email message sent to their clients – teachers, students, families, and businesses throughout the area: 

Here is text of the email:  In an emergency session Tuesday April 21st, the iSPACE Board of Trustees voted to begin efforts to permanently close iSPACE as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We have lost over 200 programs during what is normally the busiest part of our school year. In addition, we expect to lose many or all of our camps – either because closures/social distancing is still in place or because parents are fearful of sending their children out. There is still the unknown of schools starting session in the fall as well.

According to Art Jarvis, Jarvis Global Investments, an ardent supporter of iSPACE, a major fundraiser had just taken place before the coronavirus struck. There was a lot of excitement surrounding iSPACE plans for the future. The response to COVID-19 shut down all those plans, fundraising and the 200 iSPACE programs. 

“Very disappointed, they were doing so many great things,” said Jarvis, reacting to the news iSPACE intends to close permanently. “It’s a shame. They’re really doing a great job promoting STEM for young women. They did a great job bringing science, STEM, to disadvantage kids in our community.” 

iSPACE offered a lot of reasons to choose any one of their 200 programs (Provided) 

The iSPACE email to their clients concluded: 

Our fundraising efforts for the new site have essentially halted as the financial crisis and the overwhelming needs in our community for donations have significantly reduced what people can afford to give us. As a result, we will not have a location to move to in August.
We want to thank each of you for making iSPACE the great organization it is. We have impacted the lives of thousands of students and can be proud of the legacy we have left. We are very sorry to see it end this way.
We hope that you and those around you are staying healthy and positive during this difficult time. Again, we appreciate everything you have done for iSAPCE over the last 19 years.
iSPACE Staff

While the email to clients from the iSPACE staff is clear about what has happened and the vote of their Board of Trusteees, it remains to be seen if an opportunity for a reopening in the future may be possible. For now, it appears the COVID-19 pandemic has claimed iSPACE, The Stem Learning Center for our communities, as a victim. 

“I think it is a big loss for the community, ” Jarvis concluded.