Dr. Malcolm Schug (Biology) awarded NSF funds for collaborative research to support low-income STEM transfer students

Posted on April 04, 2022

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Dr. Malcolm Schug, Associate Professor and Head of the Biology Department, has been awarded NSF funding for a collaborative research project called PROSPECT S-STEM (Practices and Research on Student Pathways in Education from Community College and Transfer Students to STEM). Schug is a co-PI on the project; Aileen Reid from the Department of Educational Research Methodology in the School of Education is also involved in the effort. The lead institution is the University of Nebraska.

The grant brings together a team of universities and community colleges representing 9 current NSF S-STEM projects to create the PROSPECT S-STEM research hub. At UNCG, the effort builds on the success of the STAMPS program. The team will explore how equitable partnerships between two-year colleges and four-year institutions can empower low-income STEM transfer students.

PROSPECT S-STEM will conduct and disseminate rigorous mixed methods research addressing the following:

  1. Student Success: PROSPECT S-STEM will actively involve S-STEM Scholars in telling their own navigational success stories through photovoice case studies, in addition to working with the involved S-STEM projects to collect common quantitative data from scholars to better understand the impacts of S-STEM programs on Scholars entering the STEM workforce.

  2. Faculty Learning Communities: Involve local S-STEM faculty mentors in a PROSPECT S-STEM Faculty Learning Community (FLC) to learn from each other to explore 2YC and 4YC partnerships and study recent literature on supporting low-income STEM transfer students to design additional supports for local scholars; the FLC will test out those new ideas–adapted to different local contexts–using principles of improvement science.

  3. Program Impact: Investigate the nature of the 2YCs’ and 4YCs’ S-STEM programs and other university interventions to support Scholars before and after the transfer process. Use PROSPECT S-STEM’s hub to strengthen programmatic supports for STEM transfer students.

  4. Partnership Efficacy: Investigate the nature, efficacy and sustainability of 2YC-4YC partnerships that support STEM transfer students, with a particular focus on various partnership models enacted.

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