"It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men."


...Fredrick Douglass


Why we help

Illuminate S.T.E.M. (Sustaining Talent and Elevating Minds) was founded through the vision of Terrence Southern. While working as a robotics engineer, Mr. Southern also committed time to mentoring youth in Detroit, MI and Dallas, TX through after school programs for the last 10 years.

Our history

In 2012, Terrence decided to expand on his passion for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math by establishing Illuminate S.T.E.M., which received its 501 (c)(3) designation in December of that year


  • Mr. Southern gives me hope that more young people will make careers in technical fields and have the tools to be highly successful. I feel bless to have Mr. Souther as a friend who is part of my family.
    Raymond Roberts
    Class Tech High School
  • I learned some amazing things I could do with technology and the value of team work. iLLUMINATE S.T.E.M was very inspirational because Mr. Souther always believed in us. Even if we were unsure in ourselves.
    Brandon Crosson
    John Glenn High School
  • Mr. Southern taught me how to go after what I really wanted in life, he is actually the one who inspired me to major in Computer Engineering. Mr. Southern taught me everything that he knows about robots and he always stresses how important technology is. I look up to Mr. Southern because not too many African-American men can say that they have accomplished some of the things that Mr. Southern has accomplished.
    Tia Smith
    Cass Technical High School
  • From working with Mr. Southern I have learned too many things to mention from how to deal with girls or how properly calibrate a light sensor on a robot. I have been learning things from Mr. Southern for more than ten years ago and his lessons have played a very pivotal role in my life.
    Ronald Norwood
    Osborn High School

Useful information

We can't do this without your support.

All donations to Illuminate S.T.E.M. are tax-dedutible and go towards programming and supplies.

Interested in working with Illuminate S.T.E.M.?

We are looking for students, parents and industry professionals interested in getting invovled in our programs.

We are on a mission to help students with S.T.E.M.!

Our mission is to promote educational opportunities and provide mentorship in the fields of Science, Technology, Mathematics and Engineering.