July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021
July 19, 2022
Minorities in Engineering
There is a growing collection of literature that documents the persistence problem in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) disciplines, which is especially significant for students who belong to minority groups. The GAIN (Guide, Advance, Interact, Network) peer-mentoring program was created for undergraduate students pursuing mechanical engineering at Loyola Marymount University, as one step forward in combating this issue. The intent of this in-person program was to increase students’ motivation to persist towards their STEM degree primarily by strengthening their belongingness to engineering. In this study, initial data from the prematurely ended Spring 2020 pilot of the program (due to the COVID-19 pandemic) is analyzed with the intention of contributing to the body of knowledge on best practices in developing supportive resources for engineering students. In particular, qualitative and quantitative analyses are performed on the responses to highlighted questions from two surveys. These efforts uncover insights into what criteria students feel are most important in matching them with a mentee or mentor, what types of challenges they have faced in college, and what they hope to get out of the mentoring relationship. Demographic data was also collected to allow for the exploration of any differences in student responses based on personal information, such as ethnicity, gender, and academic class standing. These results are used to inform the improvement and redesign of GAIN to be effective in a virtual setting. Furthermore, this paper highlights the importance of building multidisciplinary teams to strengthen the recruitment and impact of out-of-class educational interventions.
Schaal, N., & Chan, S. E., & Saint Clair, J. K. (2021, July), Insights Gleaned from The GAIN Peer-Mentoring Program Pilot Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37346
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