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Getting In The Groove: A Short Summer Research Experience Builds Skills And Belonging

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

ASEE Multimedia Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.594.1 - 8.594.7

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Paper Authors

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Stacie Swingle Nunes

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2793

Getting in the Groove: A Short Summer Research Experience Builds Skills and Belonging

Stacie Swingle Nunes State University of New York at New Paltz

Birth of the SUNY New Paltz Summer Session Research Program

A program of academic support and enrichment was founded at SUNY New Paltz in the mid 1980’s with the goal of increasing the retention of traditionally underrepresented and economically disadvantaged students with majors in the sciences, math and engineering. The program is known now as AC2 in honor of the three programs that provide external funding; the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (AMP) of the National Science Foundation, the Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (C-STEP) of the New York State Department of Education, and the Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics Scholarships (CSEMS) Program also of the National Science Foundation. At the time it was founded, however, all of the external support came from C-STEP with a fiscal year of July 1 – June 30 and funding tied to the legislative process.

The early program included a summer bridge program for new students that was thought quite successful but was very difficult to run given the funding cycle. In those early years funding was by no means guaranteed and often not confirmed until shortly before the bridge program would have been scheduled to run. In 1993 - 94, when the annual funding for the program was confirmed only two weeks before the bridge program should have started the director requested permission from the New York State Department of Education to use the funds allocated to the summer bridge program to fund a summer research experience for returning students instead. The advantage to this being that the program could be offered in May and June at the end of the fiscal year rather than in July and August at the beginning. In this way there would be sufficient time to plan a quality experience once the funding was certain. Although the target audience would be returning students rather than entering students the argument was made that the goals would be similar. Approval was given and the summer session I summer research program was born. The four week span and the timing were imposed by the constraints of the grant, but we soon realized there were a number of advantages to this unconventional, short program. Over the years we have evolved the program to make the most of the advantages and to respond to feedback from our constituencies.

The Original Summer Research Program (SRP)

We planned that first summer program keeping in mind the benefits gained through the summer bridge program that it had replaced. The summer students spent a lot of time together studying and developed a community that enabled them to provide support for one another later “Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education”

Nunes, S. S. (2003, June), Getting In The Groove: A Short Summer Research Experience Builds Skills And Belonging Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee.

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