SAGE 2YC > Broaden Participation in Geoscience and STEM

Broaden Participation in the Geosciences and STEM

Bringing new ideas and people into the geosciences (and STEM more broadly) is going to be increasingly important as society tackles the large, complex issues facing it over the coming decades. Geoscience needs to attract students from populations traditionally underrepresented in the discipline and support their participation and success in order to reach into communities that will be affected by a changing world.

Supporting the Whole Student

The number and diversity of students attaining a degree in geoscience has not kept pace with the growth of the population or the opportunities for people with relevant knowledge and skills. Addressing more than just learning inside the classroom can help bring students into STEM fields and reach their educational and career goals.

Stereotype Threat and Solo Status

Stereotype Threat and Solo Status are two related issues that underrepresented populations often face in the academia. Knowing what they are, what triggers their negative effects, and how to minimize their impacts on students' success is important for attracting diverse students to our classes and programs and helping them succeed.

Supporting 2YC Students with Disabilities

Disability, or differing ability, is a natural part of human existence. As faculty or instructors, we are in a position to minimize challenges that a disability might create for our students who live with disabilities, and to then help these students change their college stories from struggling to success.

Supporting First-Generation Students at Two-Year Colleges

The journeys of first-generation students can be challenging. On average, these students arrive at college with less academic preparation than their peers, with little or no financial support from their families, and with little familiarity of the systems of bureaucracy, financial aid, and other complex avenues they must navigate in college. There are strategies to help them be successful.

Supporting Geoscience Transfer Students

Some students enter the geoscience workforce with a degree from a 2YC. Others need to transfer on for a four-year degree or more to reach the career they want for themselves. Understanding how to best support students before, during, and after the transfer process is critical to their success.

Undergraduate Research with 2YC Students

Two-year college (2YC) students can be a very different from those enrolled in four-year institutions and conducting research at 2YCs can be difficult for a variety of reasons. Regardless, two-year college students can benefit greatly from the academic and social development that research experiences afford.


Advising and mentoring are a critical part of retaining and graduating students who are ready for their next step, whether it be transitioning to the workforce or going on to further study.

Other Resources

  • Workshop: Supporting Student Success in Geoscience at Two-Year Colleges
    College of William & Mary, July 17 - 20, 2013
    This workshop brought together faculty, administrators, and education researchers from across the country, to share successful programs and activities for supporting the success of all students in geoscience at 2YCs, both in and outside the classroom.
  • Faculty Perspectives on Supporting Student Success
    These essays were submitted by the participants of the 2013 workshop Supporting Student Success in Geoscience at Two-year Colleges, describing what they are currently doing to support geoscience student success in two-year colleges.
  • Increase the Diversity of your Graduates
    The InTeGrate project has developed an extensive resource for faculty and programs interested in attracting more diverse students to their departments, supporting them through successful completion of a degree, and preparing them for the workforce.

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