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Icon for: Rick Greer

RICK GREER

University of Houston

STEM Engagement through Mentoring (SEM)

NSF Awards: 1760311

2021 (see original presentation & discussion)

Grades K-6, Undergraduate

The STEM Engagement through Mentoring (SEM) model is a STEM enrichment intervention that combines partnerships between STEM and education faculty at the University of Houston (UH) with mentorship from the participants’ fathers and UH pre-service STEM teachers, and engineering undergraduates to provide hands-on STEM experiences to fourth and fifth grade underrepresented (UR) boys. Using this model, the SEM intervention systematically exposes students to STEM disciplines, STEM professionals, including middle skill professionals, and STEM graduate and undergraduate students with a strong emphasis on engineering and science competency.

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Discussion from the 2021 STEM For All Video Showcase (31 posts)
  • Icon for: Jennifer Kidd

    Jennifer Kidd

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 10, 2021 | 05:19 p.m.

    Looks like we should talk! We're both partnering preservice teachers and engineering students to work with 4th and 5th grade kids. We could undoubtedly learn a lot from one another. So exciting to see you've brought in the Dads. Brilliant idea. Check out out here: http://videohall.com/p/1967 And then let's make a plan to connect.

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    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 10:47 a.m.

    Thanks for viewing our video and sharing yours, sounds like we should set up a time to talk soon!

  • Small default profile

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 10:47 a.m.

    Thanks for viewing our video and sharing yours, sounds like we should set up a time to talk soon!

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 10:47 a.m.

    Thanks for viewing our video and sharing yours, sounds like we should set up a time to talk soon!

  • May 11, 2021 | 12:15 a.m.

    Its great to involve family members for STEM teaching and learning especially for first generation students.

  • Icon for: Rick Greer

    Rick Greer

    Lead Presenter
    Program Manager
    May 11, 2021 | 11:26 a.m.

    Absolutely! Thank you for taking time to view our video. 

  • Icon for: DeLene Hoffner

    DeLene Hoffner

    Facilitator
    Lead Teacher
    May 11, 2021 | 12:20 a.m.

    I really enjoyed your video and project.  What were some big lessons you learned through your work? 

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 04:12 p.m.

    I'd say one of the biggest lessons of our work, both during and before COVID, was the importance of the relationships the boys developed with the mentors. One of our goals is for them to develop a STEM or engineering identity--to see themselves as STEM people. STEM, therefore, can't conflict with other identities that they hold and the mentors have an important role in helping develop that self-recognition and also conveying external recognition.

  • Icon for: Megan Davis

    Megan Davis

    Higher Ed Administrator
    May 11, 2021 | 12:12 p.m.

    I've worked in girl-serving organizations to expose underrepresented women to engineering, so this is interesting to see a boy-serving project. What do you find are the most effective approaches to an all-male audience? Are there different starting points or interests between young men and women?

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Virginia Rangel
  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 04:14 p.m.

    Hi Megan, we just started working with girls and so we're interested in learning about those differences. The literature would point to differences such as the role of competition, among others. I also think there are a lot of similarities in the process of how these youths develop a STEM identity. I'd love to hear what has been working in your program with girls.

  • Icon for: Toby Baker

    Toby Baker

    Researcher
    May 11, 2021 | 03:54 p.m.

    This is a great program for engaging families, particularly fathers. I appreciated how they try to incorporate STEM in everything. Thank you for focusing on young children of color and showing the value of STEM academics for this population. Excellent.  

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Virginia Rangel
  • Icon for: Myriam Steinback

    Myriam Steinback

    Facilitator
    Independent Consultant
    May 11, 2021 | 04:19 p.m.

    What a wonderful program!Your video is beautiful - thank you.There is nothing like having role models that you can relate to. What plans do you have to build capacity? 

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 04:21 p.m.

    Can you clarify whose capacity you're asking about? The program mentors?

  • Icon for: Allison Master

    Allison Master

    Researcher
    May 11, 2021 | 04:39 p.m.

    What a great program! I loved your video. Have you looked at whether this changes fathers' attitudes about STEM, especially in a way that might change their future behavior and involvement in doing STEM activities with their sons?

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 06:05 p.m.

    We have not had a lot of luck collecting data from the dads and other family members who participate. We are applying for a scale-up grant with some better procedures in place to collect those data. We also are proposing to follow the students at least into middle school to track their motivational beliefs and their coursetaking.

  • Icon for: Myriam Steinback

    Myriam Steinback

    Facilitator
    Independent Consultant
    May 11, 2021 | 05:52 p.m.

    Yes, program mentors and also sites. Thank you!

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 06:04 p.m.

    Thanks for the clarification. We are always looking to improve how we train the mentors. Changes we have made to their training include: Lesson design and delivery, classroom management, and more recently, culturally relevant practices. We regularly observe the sessions and provide feedback to the program manager who then works on implementing the changes.

    We also are looking to scale up to new school sites. Currently, we serve three elementary schools and are planning to add at least one next year. Thanks so much for your feedback and questions!

  • Icon for: Myriam Steinback

    Myriam Steinback

    Facilitator
    Independent Consultant
    May 12, 2021 | 12:45 p.m.

    Thank you, Virginia. Nice plan for supporting mentors.

    Best luck securing another elementary school next year!

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 13, 2021 | 10:13 a.m.

    Thanks, Myriam!

  • Icon for: Josie Melton

    Josie Melton

    Facilitator
    Post-Doctoral Researcher and Senior Instructor
    May 11, 2021 | 06:29 p.m.

    I appreciate how you have included family members and am excited to hear that you are also expanding this program for girls.  You mentioned that it has been difficult to gather data from participating family members, but what about the student participants - how are you measuring impacts on their attitudes and ideas towards STEM?

  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 12, 2021 | 09:38 a.m.

    We collect data from the students in three ways--survey (we have used one about their STEM career interests and a second one about their engineering identity), interviews each semester, and observations. This year, we've really focused on their level of engagement because everything was online and so we wanted to see how engaged they are. We used Wang et al.'s engagement scale to survey the students and to revise our interview questions.

  • Icon for: Josie Melton

    Josie Melton

    Facilitator
    Post-Doctoral Researcher and Senior Instructor
    May 13, 2021 | 03:20 p.m.

    It sounds like you are gathering a wide variety of data to learn a lot about impacts on students. The difference in engagement between face to face engineering experiences, and online could be a very interesting comparison. Thanks for the response!

  • Icon for: Catherine Horn

    Catherine Horn

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 12, 2021 | 05:06 p.m.

    Deeply appreciate this work and the approach. Thanks for investing in our future scientists in this way!

     
    2
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Rick Greer
    Virginia Rangel
  • Icon for: Lindsay Palmer

    Lindsay Palmer

    Graduate Student
    May 12, 2021 | 07:00 p.m.

    Great work! I love the mentorship approach and exposure to STEM for both boys and their fathers. Your intervention is a very holistic and mindful approach to an intervention for young students. Thank you for your video! 

  • Icon for: Elsa Gonzalez

    Elsa Gonzalez

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 13, 2021 | 01:40 a.m.

    Congratulation to the team, very impactful work!

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Rick Greer
    Virginia Rangel
  • Icon for: Lindy Johnson

    Lindy Johnson

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 13, 2021 | 07:57 a.m.

    This is beautiful work! I love the family and community connections you are foregrounding. Our work also focuses on mentorship, and I'd love to hear more details about the kinds of training you provide for mentors.

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Virginia Rangel
  • Icon for: Virginia Rangel

    Virginia Rangel

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 13, 2021 | 10:14 a.m.

    In one of my responses above, I have a general description but would be happy to follow up to provide additional details if you'd like.

  • Icon for: DeLene Hoffner

    DeLene Hoffner

    Facilitator
    Lead Teacher
    May 13, 2021 | 09:39 a.m.

    Bravo to all for this wonderful discussion! Thank you for viewing and adding your questions and expertise. Please share the STEM Showcase with others so they can participate in the discussion too. Let's get more educators involved in viewing these top projects. Voting and discussion ends on May 18th at 8PM EDT. (but viewing is open anytime) https://stemforall2021.videohall.com/

    For presenters, what are your next steps going forward?

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Rick Greer
  • Icon for: Rick Greer

    Rick Greer

    Lead Presenter
    Program Manager
    May 13, 2021 | 11:53 a.m.

    Agreed, our discussion has been fantastic! Thanks for the question DeLene! Here are a few ways our team plans to scale the project: we will include girls to broaden participation, add a parent/family liaison to program staff to assist with family engagement, and increase the number of participating schools in the surrounding area.   

  • Icon for: DeLene Hoffner

    DeLene Hoffner

    Facilitator
    Lead Teacher
    May 16, 2021 | 01:15 a.m.

    Thank you so much.  These sound like wonderful next steps. 

  • Icon for: Myriam Steinback

    Myriam Steinback

    Facilitator
    Independent Consultant
    May 15, 2021 | 10:51 a.m.

    Rick, It’s good to see that you plan to include girls. There are undoubtedly mothers,too, who will be happy to be mentoring them. 

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