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Detroit Lions Brandon Copeland to serve as principal for a day at mark twain school for scholars

Tata Technologies, Athletes for Charity and the Detroit Lions have joined forces to promote science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in Detroit schools.

Press release

Detroit, Mich. – Tata Technologies, Athletes for Charity and the Detroit Lions have joined forces to promote science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in Detroit schools. Ten Detroit public schools will be selected to participate in the new initiative. On Tuesday, Oct. 25 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Detroit Lions defensive end Brandon Copeland will serve as principal for a day at Mark Twain School for Scholars located at 12800 Visger St.

The schedule for the day includes a distribution of age-appropriate, STEM-related books to Mark Twain students, introductions to STEM literature and industry professionals, and a number of STEM-themed activities in a designated “STEM Zone.” The STEM Zone will feature hands-on activities presented by Tata Technologies, the Detroit Lions, Wayne State University’s School of Medicine, Marathon Petroleum and the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History to engage the students in creative learning.

The demand for skilled workers in science, technology, engineering, and math is on the rise while the availability of qualified applicants is declining because students are not pursuing degrees and careers within the sector. This initiative aims to improve learning outcomes and student interest in STEM fields, while creating pathways to success in post-secondary education and 21st century careers.

“Creating a positive learning environment that introduces STEM at an early age helps ensure that the next generation is developing the types of skills that will be in high demand when they join the workforce,” said Tata Technologies spokesman Patrick Pepper. “We’re thrilled to be working with such wonderful partners in Athletes for Charity and the Detroit Lions on this initiative.”

Copeland, originally from Sykesville, Maryland, graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business with a Bachelor of Science in Economics. He was signed to the Detroit Lions in 2015. Copeland is also the grandson of Super Bowl V Champion Roy Hilton who played for the Baltimore Colts (1965-1973), New York Giants (1974) and Atlanta Falcons (1975).

“I am honored to partner with Athletes for Charity and Tata Technologies to promote the importance of STEM,” Copeland said. “I look forward to taking on the role of Principal for a Day and use this opportunity to impact the students at Mark Twain. I will be joined by various teammates throughout the day, who have agreed to serve as Assistant Principals for the day, to share words of wisdom with the students.”

Students in grades 4-8 will be invited to participate in an essay writing contest based on the books received for a chance to win prizes including tickets to upcoming Lions games; autographed items from Detroit Lions players, LEGO product to foster hands-on learning; and field trips to local educational institutions.

“Our goal is to invest time and resources into the development of creative and effective approaches to STEM education,” said Cathleen Laporte, founder and president of Athletes for Charity. “Our partnership with Tata Technologies and the Detroit Lions represent an innovative way to fuse the nonprofit, corporate and sports sectors, to motivate students in the areas of STEM.”

About Tata Technologies

Tata Technologies is a leading provider of engineering and product development IT services for the global manufacturing industry.

The company applies cutting-edge technology and engineering know-how to provide a competitive advantage to customers in the manufacturing sector. Tata Technologies is a strategic partner for developing complete vehicles, engineering subsystems and components, managing the NPI process and collaborative engineering engagements, and tying together information created and used throughout the extended manufacturing enterprise. Corporate headquarters are in Singapore, with regional headquarters offices in the United States (Novi, Michigan), India (Pune) and the UK (Coventry). Founded in 1989, the company has a combined global work force of more than 8,000 employees serving clients worldwide from facilities in North America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.

For more information about Tata Technologies visit

About Athletes for Charity

Athletes for Charity is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to serve as a charitable initiative dedicated towards encouraging the giving of time, financial resources, and information to improve the collective lives of disadvantaged youth, advance the common good and support the nonprofit sectors that benefit the underprivileged, including foster care children.

Athletes for Charity achieves its mission by teaming up with professional athletes, sports leagues and teams, various sports professionals, foster care agencies and related organizations, the corporate sector, as well as volunteers and mentors, to empower and support the development of disadvantaged youth. Athletes for Charity’s work range from the development and coordination of youth mentoring programs; youth literacy initiatives; STEM education programs; assisting with the establishment of athlete foundations and charitable projects; the planning and implementation of camps and clinics for youth that encompass an educational component; holiday toy drives for underprivileged children; coordination of athlete appearances; and planning special events which include youth and athlete participation i.e. “Bowl with an Athlete,” “Back to School / Sports Day,” and “Principal for a Day” events.

For more information about Athletes for Charity, visit

About The Detroit Lions

The Detroit Lions are a professional American football team based in Detroit, Michigan. They are members of the North Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL), and play their home games at Ford Field in Downtown Detroit. The team located to Detroit in 1934 and is the National Football League’s fifth oldest franchise. The Detroit Lions most recently made the NFL playoffs in 2014, when they finished with a 10-6 record. In addition to professional football, the Detroit Lions have a very visible and active community relations role in the Detroit area. With a focus on health and wellness and community revitalization, the Lions have contributed $7.2 million through philanthropic efforts since 1991.

For more information about the Detroit Lions, visit


J. Patrick Pepper

Corporate Communications Director


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