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Icon for: Mark Filowitz


California State University Fullerton, California Polytechnic University Pomona, Citrus College

INCLUDES: (STEM)^3: Scaling (STEM)2

NSF Awards: 1649240

2017 (see original presentation & discussion)


This project addresses broadening participation challenges concerning underrepresented minority students seeking STEM degrees at insitutions of higher education in Southern California. Data show that Latino students in particular are well-represented at local two-year colleges (TYC) but less well-represented among STEM bachelor’s degree recipients.   In order to promote success for TYC students with an interest in STEM, we will build upon and expand a proven model for strengthening transfer pathways from TYC to four year STEM degree programs.

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Discussion from the 2017 STEM for All Video Showcase (5 posts)
  • Icon for: William McHenry

    William McHenry

    Executive Director
    May 15, 2017 | 10:16 a.m.

    The (STEM)^3 Transfer Model Starts slow but ends on a very high note. It is common knowledge that students from underrepresented minority groups are overrepresented on community college campuses. This model provides a strategy for getting these students involved with STEM research, and the model also attempt to bring these students into the STEM community. The goals is to increase the transfer rate to universities of students from community colleges with STEM majors. A good video.  Should this model be considered in other states?

  • Icon for: Jake Foster

    Jake Foster

    May 16, 2017 | 06:11 a.m.

    I appreciate the effort to support under-represented transfer students to experience and enter the STEM workforce. A nice mix of proven strategies are being used to engage these students, such as research experience and mentoring. Does this project have a goal of transforming the higher education institution as well? If this program proves successful, will it change how STEM programs or majors are designed in participating institutions?

  • Icon for: Mark Filowitz

    Mark Filowitz

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Dean
    May 16, 2017 | 11:54 a.m.

    Thank you for the question.

    The success of underrepresented students is alreasy in the core mission of all 23 CSU campuses. The success of STEM transfers also depends on good articulation of courses to make sure that STEM transfers arrive at the 4 year with the right prerequisites to move ahead in the hierarchial curriculum. If students spend 2,3,4 years at a community college and then have to look ahead at 3,4,5 more years at the 4 year, they will often change majors or drop out.

  • Icon for: Heidi Schweingruber

    Heidi Schweingruber

    May 16, 2017 | 09:03 p.m.

    Nice model for helping TYC students interested in STEM to envision themselves in STEM careers. The combination of research experience and mentoring can be very powerful. I have many questions about the model. How do you prepare the mentors? How are students identified to participate (both as mentors and as mentees)? How much contact do the mentees have with faculty at the 4-year institutions? Are students who participate also given guidance on how to navigate the transition to 4-year institutions, for example, what courses they should take at the TYC?  Finally, what are you learning about how well the program translates to other institutions? 

  • Icon for: Mark Filowitz

    Mark Filowitz

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Dean
    May 17, 2017 | 02:31 p.m.

    Thanks for the questions.

    The mentors all come from our partner community college (Citrus College) where they that they transferred from to ome to  Cal Poly Pomona (CPP). They visit STEM students at Citrus, help with the summer research experience at CPP and in year two assist the transfer students in STEM that come to CPP. They are trained by . They have to pass muster in an interview process that assesse both academic and personal attribute skills. They are trained by professional staff in the CPP PolyTransfer Resource Center. On the community college campuses the peer mentors conduct workshops which include how to apply and what prerequisites they need to get on the STEM curriculum roadmap. The learning process about translation to another CSU is a work in progress that we will be assessing at the one and two year points.

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