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Successful Models in Community College STEM Education

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Best Practices for Two-Year Students Majoring in Engineering & STEM Fields

Tagged Division

Two Year College Division

Tagged Topic


Page Count


Page Numbers

26.1439.1 - 26.1439.16



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Paper Authors


Anna Marbella Camacho Cañada College

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As Project Director for a $5.9 million Hispanic-Serving Institution-STEM Grant (CalSTEP), Anna collaboratively spearheaded the creation of The STEM Center, which promotes STEM education through programs, activities, academic/support services, and opportunities for students, faculty, staff, and the greater community. Anna Camacho joined Cañada College in 2012 in the capacity of Assistant Project Director of Hispanic-Serving Institution-STEM Grant (CalSTEP). In this position, Anna manages all financial aspects of the grant’s $1.1 million yearly budget. In addition to handling fiscal matters, Anna also collaborates in program implementation & development and new grant proposals. Prior to joining Cañada College, Anna was a Program Officer at the Hispanic Scholarship Fund where she implemented programs aimed at increasing college going knowledge to underrepresented families in multiple states .

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The STEM Center: Successful Models in Community College STEM EducationAbstract:The STEM Center at XXXXXXX College identified four key obstacles faced by a majority ofour community college students interested in STEM: 1) exponential attrition – the longer thecourse sequence the less likely students are to persist, 2) lack of social and academic integration,3) lack of awareness of academic options, and 4) low self-efficacy – students do not believe thatthey can succeed in STEM.In an effort to address these obstacles and integrate all STEM student support services withinSTEM academic study, we created the STEM Center. Leveraging multiple grants and a varietyof STEM programs and services with a unified vision, the STEM Center now provides a one-stop destination for everything from study groups, tutoring, and club meetings to bridgeprograms (like the award-winning Math Jam), a STEM Speaker Series, STEM specific academiccounseling, STEM career exploration programs for high school students, internship andscholarship opportunities, and STEM faculty professional development.While success of the STEM Center’s individual programs is specifically linked to programobjectives and outcomes, gauging success of the STEM Center as a whole is done through abroad-based examination of four primary indicators: increased enrollment in STEM courses;reduced time to complete STEM course sequences; increased student engagement, retention, andpersistence; and an increase in the number of STEM majors.This paper will examine the exponential increase in minority student enrollment in transfer levelcourses, retention and success rates and explore the driving factors behind these increases. Wewill also outline the STEM Center’s development, highlight the programs and services that areoffered, examine success indicators, and discuss obstacles that have been addressed throughoutthis process.

Camacho, A. M. (2015, June), Successful Models in Community College STEM Education Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24776

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