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Essays on Broadening Access to the Earth and Environmental Sciences

These essays were contributed in association with the February 2014 workshop on Broadening Access to the Earth and Environmental Sciences held at Arizona State University. Workshop participants and community members submitted essays in response to the prompt:

Submit a 1-2 page essay describing how your programs help students understand the relevance of their learning about the Earth to issues they care about. What does it mean to be "societally important" and "relevant" to your student population? How does this work inform the department's work throughout the cycle of attracting new students, supporting them through the major, and preparing them for careers?

Results 1 - 10 of 31 matches

Increasing Participation in the Geosciences at El Paso Community College
Joshua Villlalobos, El Paso Community College
Community Colleges currently serve 44% of all undergraduate students and 45% of all of all first time freshmen in the US. The combined low cost and flexibility of community colleges has also meant that they accommodate a large percentage of minorities entering higher education. Hispanics now constitute 15% of the general population and 19% of college population in the US. This increase has led to more Institutions being designated HSI (Hispanic Serving Institutions) by the federal government, where at least 25 percent of the full-time-equivalent students are Latino.

Institution Type: Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI)

Sustaining an Undergraduate Research Program that Serves as a Bridge Between 2YC and 4YC
Diane Doser, University of Texas at El Paso, The
For the past ~4 years the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) has been working with El Paso Community College (EPCC) to help ease the transition of underrepresented students in geoscience and environmental science between our institutions. One of most successful activities has been the establishment of cross-institutional research projects with EPCC students. Support for the projects originally came from WAESO (Western Alliance to Expand Student Opportunities) and later an NSF OEDG grant to EPCC, but continuation of the research program requires it to become self-sustaining. In the past year we have focused on a variety of research projects that can be conducted in agricultural fields located with ~300 m of the Mission del Valle campus of EPCC. The projects primarily focus on geochemistry, geophysics and sedimentology and how these factors affect agricultural crop yields.

Institution Type: Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI)

The SOARS Program - Engaging Minority Students through Geoscience Research Experiences
Rebecca Haacker-Santos, University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR)
Significant Opportunities in Atmospheric and Related Sciences (SOARS) combines a summer internship with year-round mentoring, conference travel, and publishing support. During their ten week internship at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), SOARS protégés get to choose a research topic and will explore it with the help of their scientific mentors. They also attend a weekly scientific communication workshop, seminars about graduate school and career choices, and complete end-of-summer poster and oral presentations. Topics of research span the broad field of climate and weather, including computing and engineering in support of the atmospheric sciences.

Institution Type: Non-minority-serving

Making Environmental Science Relevant to a Diverse Student Body at ASU West
Becky Ball, Arizona State University at the West Campus
The School of Mathematical & Natural Sciences at the West Campus of Arizona State University serves a very diverse population of students, with ~40% of our majors from Hispanic, Asian-American, American Indian, and African American ethnicities, and half female. Most of our students come from the local Phoenix area, and their urban background may influence their perception of the relevance of environmental science to their every-day lives. Environmental science courses can maintain their relevance to students that do not feel a strong connection with their natural world by being taught from a human-oriented perspective. In many of our courses, we highlight the relationship between the environment and human well-being. For example, one upper-level course in the Environmental Science concentration is called The Human Environment (LSC 362), which explores human beings' interactions with the biophysical world, particularly how we are changing our world and our world is changing us.

Institution Type: Non-minority-serving

A Career Path for African-American Students from HBCUs to National Laboratories
Robert Liebermann, Stony Brook University
We have already had great success in recruiting students to this 2-year program leading to a MS degree in Geosciences instrumentation at Stony Brook and positioning them for employment as Science Associates in national user facilities of the DOE, such as the National Synchrotron Light Source at Brookhaven.

Institution Type: Historically Black College/University (HBCU)

Geology at NOVA: Important ideas that are failing to reach everyone
Callan Bentley, Northern Virginia Community College
Callan Bentley, Math, Science and Engineering, Northern Virginia Community College Part I: No plan for minorities, and the data show it At Northern Virginia Community College's Annandale campus, we have no ...

Institution Type: Non-minority-serving

The International Boundary and Water Commission: Serving the Nation and Society in Minority, Veteran and Disability Recruitment in Water Management, Engineering and Environmental Issues for Today and Tomorrow.
Mark Howe, US State Dept, International Boundary and Water Commission
Mark Howe, Environmental Management Division, US State Dept, International Boundary and Water Commission The United States Section, International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) have helped to promote ...

Institution Type: Non-minority-serving

Biological and Environmental Science (BES) Scholars @ AAMU: Pathway for Demonstrating Excellence and Strengthening Training in the Environmental Sciences at Alabama A&M University
Elica Moss, Alabama A & M University
Elica Moss, Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, Alabama A & M University Environmental issues have created a critical global need for highly educated scientists, professionals, and government ...

Institution Type: Historically Black College/University (HBCU)

Integrating Undergraduate Research into the Geosciences at a Two-Year College
Kaatje Kraft, Mesa Community College
Kaatje Kraft, Physical Science, Mesa Community College Research supports that undergraduate research (UGR) is critical for preparing students to be successful in STEM domains. In addition, there is evidence that ...

Institution Type: Non-minority-serving

Creating a Thriving Geoscience Program at a Small, Minority-Serving Public University
Dirk Baron, California State University-Bakersfield
Dirk Baron, Geological Sciences, California State University, Bakersfield California State University, Bakersfield (CSUB) is located in Kern County in the southern San Joaquin Valley of California. It is the only ...

Institution Type: Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI)

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