(Augusta, GA)—Last week, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced that 12 colleges and universities that serve large minority populations will receive $2,898,578 in grants to strengthen education programs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.
Paine College was one of twelve institutions to receive the U.S. Department of Education’s Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP) award. Under the Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP), grants were awarded to institutions in California, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, and Texas to increase the number of ethnic minorities, particularly ethnic women, studying in STEM fields.
"These grants will help prepare more minority students for STEM-related (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) careers, which are in high-demand and critical to building a competitive workforce that will grow our economy," Duncan said.
Funds awarded to Paine College for the first year will be $240,129 and will total $739,481 over the course of the three-year program. This project will be lead by Dr. J. Derek Stone, Chair of the Department of Mathematics, Science and Technology and co-directed by three Paine mathematics and computer science faculty members, Dr. C.P. Abubucker, Mrs. Komala Balakrishnan, and Dr. Lixin Wang. Additionally, Dr. Molly Zhou, of the Department of Education, will serve as program evaluator.
The overarching goal of the program is to develop the mathematical skills of Paine College students in order to improve their overall performance in STEM courses.
The program is arranged in to three (3) components: 1) A summer enrichment program to give incoming freshman the opportunity to develop their mathematical skills and improve their preparedness for college mathematics courses; 2) A STEM curriculum revision to enhance and update content and activities, and create a meaningful and stimulating, hand-on learning environment for students (particularly in mathematics courses); 3) Student retention and development activities will involve opportunities to conduct summer and academic year research with Paine faculty and present findings at scientific conferences.
This program will help fulfill the need of producing high quality STEM majors and graduates to meet STEM career demands, which will ultimately benefit Paine College, but our city, our region and our country.
MSEIP supports the Administration's overall goal of improving STEM education to increase America's technological and scientific competitiveness. In addition to the goal of these grants – to expand career opportunities for underrepresented groups, especially women --the Administration is also working to improve the quality of math and science teaching in our Nation's schools so that students can master challenging content, think critically in STEM-related subjects, and are no longer outperformed by students in other nations.
MSEIP is currently supporting 38 continuation grants, in addition to the 12 three-year grants awarded today.
For more information, contact the Office of Communications & Marketing at (706) 396-7591 or Ncarter@paine.edu.