PCC wins $1 million NSF grant to support women, minorities in STEM
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded Portland Community College with a $999,941 grant to create pathways from college to careers within the areas of mathematics and science.
The College to Careers in Math and Science Project, which starts Nov. 1, is funded by NSF’s Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Program (S-STEM) and will be based at PCC’s Southeast Campus (2305 SE 82nd and Division St.). The aim of this project is to implement strategies that lower barriers to participation for women and other underrepresented students in STEM fields and provide the support structure for them to succeed.
The project is a collaboration between PCC, industry advisors, Portland State University and PSU’s statewide Oregon Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (OR MESA) Program. The College to Careers in Math and Science Project will award 108 one-year scholarships during the grant’s five years. Students enrolled in biological, physical, and mathematical sciences at the Southeast Campus will be eligible for the scholarships. Seventy two of the scholarships will be specifically for transitioning recipients to Portland State’s STEM programs.
The project’s staff anticipate that 85 percent of scholars will be retained from their first to second years due to the project’s wrap-around support in key subjects, ensuring better completion rates.
“The grant will allow institutionally underserved students at the Southeast Campus to connect with other students within a cohort and experience STEM courses,” said Laura Horani, dean of Math, Sciences & the CTE Division at the Southeast Campus. “Students will be further supported by peer tutors and mentors working in STEM fields with the goal of recruiting and retaining diverse scholars.”
The National Science Foundation (NSF) supports research, innovation, and discovery that provides the foundation for economic growth in this country. By advancing the frontiers of science and engineering, our nation can develop the knowledge and cutting edge technologies needed to address the challenges we face today and will face in the future.