Federal Grant Targets Underrepresented Students for STEM Careers

Front Range Community College is a participant in a newly awarded $1.5 million National Science Foundation grant to Community College of Aurora (CCA) to increase participation of underrepresented students in STEM careers.

The Louis Stokes B2B Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP) grant will support a project, under the direction of CCA, to establish the Metro Denver STEM Alliance, a partnership among CCA and the four other community colleges serving the metro Denver area: Arapahoe Community College, Community College of Denver, FRCC, and Red Rocks Community College.

“The five Denver metro-area community colleges are very excited about this grant as it will allow us to further our collaborative efforts to recruit, retain and transfer underrepresented students into STEM programs and careers,” said Betsy Oudenhoven, CCA president. “We thank the National Science Foundation for their support of this very important work and for helping us to diversify the STEM pipeline.”

The Metro Denver STEM Alliance will increase the number of underrepresented minority students enrolling in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) programs at two-year institutions, transferring to four-year STEM baccalaureate programs, and ultimately embarking on successful STEM careers. The grant also will support collaborative projects to foster STEM student success, address systemic barriers, and promote a unified agenda with four-year university partners to:

  • strengthen and streamline transfer pathways
  • elevate awareness of the value and potential of underrepresented students among STEM employers
  • serve as a model for best practices and replication in other areas of the state and nationally.

FRCC will use its portion of the grant to fund a STEM transfer coach at the Westminster Campus.  In addition, there will funds for student stipends for participation in LSAMP activities.

For more information about this award, contact Victor Vialpando Nunez, dean of the School of Professional Studies and Sciences at 303-340-7243.


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About Front Range Community College

FRCC offers nearly 100 degree and certificate programs from locations in Boulder County, Larimer County, Westminster, and Brighton, and online. FRCC is a member of the Colorado Community College System.

About the Colorado Community College System

The Colorado Community College System (CCCS) is the state’s largest system of higher education, serving more than 137,000 students annually at 13 colleges and 39 locations across Colorado. CCCS’s open access mission ensures that all Coloradans who aspire to enrich their lives have access to quality higher education opportunities. CCCS students save time and money with affordable tuition and fees, concurrent enrollment and guaranteed transfer to any public university in Colorado. Online courses are available via Colorado Community Colleges Online. CCCS also oversees career and technical programs in its 13 colleges, more than 160 school districts and 6 other post-secondary institutions. By partnering with business and industry, CCCS helps employers meet workforce needs and prepares students for direct entry to their chosen career pathway. The vast majority of CCCS students are Colorado residents and, after graduation, 97% of CCCS students stay in state becoming the workforce that powers the Colorado economy and the heart of its neighborhoods, businesses and communities.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

John Feeley is director of public relations at Front Range Community College.