June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
12.108.1 - 12.108.12
A Scholarship Recruitment and Selection Strategy that Successfully Attracts Diverse and Academically Talented Freshmen
We describe recruitment and selection procedures of the Computer Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Scholarship (CSEMS) Program at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee that are designed to attract students who are academically talented, financially needy, and diverse. In particular, we address the possible exclusion of underrepresented minority students that could result if standardized test scores are used indiscriminately as metrics of student performance in both recruitment and selection procedures. We describe a “conditional award” process that enables students whose calculus placement is moderately below calculus to competitively apply for and receive scholarships; awards to such students are activated on the condition that they attempt to attain calculus placement prior to matriculation. We present data that demonstrate moderate effectiveness of these methods in fostering diversity among our scholars and reasonably encouraging retention and estimated graduation rates. We discuss areas of improvement for future program years, such as forging new partnerships with local Project Lead The Way high schools to recruit higher numbers of females and minorities, and developing new mentoring opportunities to reduce attrition, especially among underrepresented minority students.
The Computer Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Scholarship (CSEMS) Program was authorized by Congress as part of the American Competitiveness and Workforce Act of 1998. It is administered by the National Science Foundation’s Division of Undergraduate Education (DUE). The program was modified in 2004 and is now known as the Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (S-STEM) Program. The CSEMS Program supports academically talented students, financially needy students for study in the “targeted disciplines” of computer science, engineering, and mathematics; the S-STEM program will additionally support study in other natural sciences. Although metrics of financial need are established by the federal government, participating institutions interpret thresholds for academic merit and financial need based on local circumstances. In addition to supporting students with financial need, the CSEMS and S-STEM programs broadly aim to increase the number of students – particularly traditionally underrepresented students – who choose study, attain degrees, and ultimately seek employment in the STEM disciplines.
In 2002, the College of Engineering and Applied Science (CEAS) and the College of Letters and Science (L&S) at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) received a grant to establish a CSEMS Program. Our program was designed to respond to the following circumstances: (1) only about 30% of incoming freshmen in the targeted disciplines (engineering, computer science, and mathematics) are placed at calculus; (2) many students take courses out of sequence (e.g. approximately 30% of students in “sophomore” Dynamics are seniors); and (3) being financially needy, approximately 75% of UWM students work at least 20 hours per week to support their
Papadopoulos, C., & Brucks, K., & Key, E., & Munson, E., & Vairavan, K. (2007, June), A Scholarship Recruitment And Selection Strategy That Successfully Attracts Diverse And Academically Talented Freshmen Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. https://peer.asee.org/3014
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