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Board 397: The Development of Professional Mentors to Supplement Low Socio-Economic Students’ Webs-of-Support

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2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Baltimore , Maryland

Publication Date

June 25, 2023

Start Date

June 25, 2023

End Date

June 28, 2023

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topics

Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session

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Dr. Sarah E. LaRose joined the Department of Agricultural Sciences Education and Communication at Purdue University in the fall of 2018 as an Assistant Professor of Agricultural Education. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science and a Master of

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Robert Merton Stwalley III P.E. Purdue University, West Lafayette

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Dr. Robert M. Stwalley III, P.E. joined the Agricultural & Biological Engineering department as a faculty member in the fall of 2013. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and Biological Engineering (ABE) and his M.S.E. and Ph.D. from ME.

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The National Science Foundation approved a program in 2016 to investigate the influence of adult mentors on low socio-economic students seeking collegiate degrees in STEM fields. Students who expressed a strong desire for an engineering major at a state-supported land grant institution and were denied admission into engineering, but then admitted into Exploratory Studies, were given scholarships and focused mentoring by faculty and staff. The Rising Scholars program had very specific pathway activities through a collegiate career, designed to introduce the student to a variety of potential adult mentors. Students were enrolled in several experiential activities, placing them in proximity with multiple faculty, graduate students, and staff members. Support network members were tracked by researchers throughout the study, and a special index was developed which identifies professional contact. Results indicated that students applying the mentor recruitment methodology actively enhanced their support networks and finished college with a strong web of professional support.

LaRose, S., & Stwalley, R. M. (2023, June), Board 397: The Development of Professional Mentors to Supplement Low Socio-Economic Students’ Webs-of-Support Paper presented at 2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Baltimore , Maryland. 10.18260/1-2--43121

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