Academic Creative Engagement (ACE) has grown to now include Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). This program is an out-of-school academic curriculum for grades 6-8 and is connected to 21st Century Skills, National Standards and the sport of tennis. The curriculum is created by the NJTL of Trenton, and is designed to support academic achievement, health/wellness and social/emotional skills by guiding children through educational processes that include decision-making, problem solving, and working together toward common goals. When combined with a tennis program, it provides Developmental Assets and reflects the ideals and principles of Arthur Ashe by giving children access to a safe and healthy educational opportunity. It can operate in partnership with schools, youth centers, government programs, universities and after school providers. The lessons are engaging, support classroom instruction, and encourage students to communicate and participate in each of the various activities.
Schools are mandated to prepare children for specific state assessments: whereas an out-of-school program provides the chance to talk about learning, the importance of thinking, discussing STEAM concepts, writing clearly and speaking well. The activities contained in ACE/STEAM provide a platform from which these goals can be reached.