The National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded Delaware County Community College a $650,000 grant from its Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (S-STEM) program.
The college will use the grant to provide scholarships and support to qualified, academically talented, financially underprivileged students interested in STEM professions. It’s the second NSF grant the college has received in the past two years, but the first from the S-STEM program.
The grant will enable Delaware County Community College to utilize its existing STEM programs, high-tech STEM Center, and state-of-the-art educational facilities to provide assistance to 40 students over a five-year period. Participants will work together in learning cohorts of 10 students, and will receive:
- mentoring, tutoring, internship, and cooperative education opportunities
- exposure to guest STEM speakers and careers through seminars and field trips
- enhanced assistance for transfer to four-year colleges and universities
Studies show that learning cohorts can be instrumental in building student self-esteem, sense of purpose, and persistence, which are valuable attributes for college success. Also, by encouraging participation of groups who are traditionally underrepresented in STEM majors, the initiative is expected to increase access to educational and professional pathways for a diverse body of students, including women, people of color, students with disabilities, and the economically disadvantaged.
To participate in the college’s “Supporting Talent for Academic Recruitment in STEM” (STARS) program, students must have either a high school or general equivalency diploma, a minimum 3.0 grade point average, and either plan to enroll, or be currently enrolled, full-time (12 credits per semester) in either the Engineering program or Mathematics/Natural Science programs at the college.
Each year, NSF receives more than 48,000 proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards. NSF is an independent federal agency with a $7.5 billion annual budget that supports science and engineering research and education.
For more information about the college’s STARS program, contact Associate Professor of Biology Sandra Devenny at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 610-359-5246.