NASA Offers Funds to Minority Institutions to Prepare High School Students For University

United States North America Higher Education News by Erudera News Mar 28, 2023

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National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) will support seven minority-serving institutions so the latter can prepare high school students from underrepresented communities for higher education.

According to a statement by NASA, seven Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) - higher education institutions serving black Americans, and one Predominantly Black Institution (PBI) have been selected to receive more than $3 million, funds that will be used to support students in precollege summer programs in the United States.

The agency said it will help students to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) programs, Erudera.com reports.

Senior Advisor for Engagement and Equity at NASA Shahra Lambert said NASAs commitment is to inspire the Artemis Generation and help them succeed by providing the right tools. Lambert added that the support will pave the way to prepare and empower high school students for the future.

Institutions have submitted proposals under NASA’s Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP), a project that provides financial support to research, academic, and technology capabilities of minority institutions.

According to managers, the project is beneficial to students as they will be able to participate in research related to the agency’s missions.

“This project gives students an opportunity to experience what it’s like to live on a college campus, attend classes, and build relationships with professors and like-minded peers,” Torry Johnson, MUREP project manager, said.

Institutions and their projects that have been selected to receive support from NASA are:

  1. Albany State University, Georgia, with the project named “ASU Accelerated Research Training Experience and Mentorship in STEM (ARTEMIS).”
  2. Clayton State University, Morrow, Georgia, with its project “Artificial Intelligence Study in Earth Exploration Summer Academy.”
  3. Fayetteville State University, North Carolina, with a project on “Fayetteville State University’s NASA MUREP Precollege Summer Institute: Cutting-Edge Technologies for Examining Climate Change (FSU-CTECC).”
  4. Lincoln University, Jefferson City, Missouri - “Digital Agriculture, Data Science, and Robotics: Applied Research and Training for Enhancing Motivation in Science (DDR-ARTEMIS)”
  5. Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tennessee - “Collaborative Interactive Data Science Academy”
  6. Tuskegee University, Alabama - “Tuskegee’s Summer Institute for Increasing Diversity Among Incoming STEM Undergraduates”
  7. University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Princess Anne - “HAWKS MUREP Precollege Summer Institute (PSI)”
  8. University of The Virgin Islands – “The NASA-UVI Pre-College Engineering Summer Institute”

Minority communities in the US are people from disadvantaged groups. This includes African Americans, American Indians/Alaskan Natives, and Hispanics.

Data by the US Department of Education show that, between the fall of 2000 and 2017, the number of Black students at public schools in the US decreased from 17 to 15 percent, and a more significant drop in percentage was recorded in the number of White students, down from 61 to 48 percent within the same timeframe.

On the other hand, there was an increase in Hispanic students at public schools, from 16 to 27 percent, over these years.

Picture: Jametlene Reskp | Unsplash

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