Pathways to Geoscience: Oklahoma Tribal Nations Regional Alliance

Wednesday 4:30pm-5:45pm Beren Auditorium
Poster Session Part of Wednesday Poster Session

Session Chairs

Molly Yunker, University of Oklahoma Norman Campus
Jefferson Chang, University of Oklahoma Norman Campus
Jacob I. Walter, University of Oklahoma Norman Campus
The Oklahoma Tribal Nations Regional Alliance (OTNRA) is part of a larger network of regional efforts to build engagement, capacity, and continuity in local underrepresented populations through geosciences. Locally, OTNRA seeks to address the relationship between increased number of earthquakes and energy industry practices, and resulting implications for energy production and energy-related jobs in Oklahoma. Induced seismicity is especially important to Native Americans, who have a close association with the land and sovereignty within their jurisdictional boundaries. There are approximately 130,000 Native American students in K-12 institutions in the state. Although open to all students, we focus our efforts towards regions with dense Native American populations, to better reach this underrepresented demographic in the geosciences. Here, we describe Phase 2 of our proposal to refine the educational pathway toward geoscience careers, which were initially developed during the pilot phase, to create a more sophisticated pathway map that offers multiple opportunities for learners at all levels of schooling from pre-K through higher education. Inspired by a river network, the new pathway map shows nine interconnected streams that represent educational experiences of several activities span multiple age ranges. We describe each of the nine streams along the pathway; six of which is currently underway (BLOSSM, GeoXP, Geologists in the Classroom, STEM Summer Camps, International Research Experience for Students, and Native Science & Earth Systems course); the remaining three streams are new conceptualizations of potential geoscience-related educational opportunities that we plan to develop in the upcoming years in collaboration with Native community leaders (Community Open Houses, Pathways Panel, and Internship Program). Activities in Phase 2 of the OTNRA are aligned with other regional efforts under the EarthConnections Alliance.