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UAlbany Receives NSF Grant to Establish Bridge to Doctorate Program for Underrepresented Populations in the STEM Fields

UAlbany’s Bridge to Doctorate program will expand participation in science, technology, engineering, and math fields and prepare participants to be leaders in science at the national and international level. (Photo by P. Scott Barrow)

ALBANY, N.Y. (October 16, 2013) -- The University at Albany will establish a Bridge to the Doctorate program to encourage students from underrepresented populations to pursue graduate studies in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. The goal of UAlbany’s project is to expand participation in STEM fields and prepare participants to be leaders in science research at the national and international level.

The program, supported by a $987,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant, will provide fellowships to qualified students from populations traditionally absent in STEM studies, removing the financial barriers that prevent many of these students from pursuing graduate study. It will also provide academic and research support services for students. The Bridge to the Doctorate program is part of the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation program at NSF.

"This grant will strengthen our efforts to build a diverse community of scholars in STEM graduate programs at the University,” said Kevin Williams, UAlbany vice provost for graduate education and primary investigator on the program. “It will also allow UAlbany to recruit highly talented students and provide intensive mentoring and professional development as they pursue their doctoral degrees."

The University at Albany has a long history of fostering student success in the STEM fields. The University's  Center for Achievement, Retention and Student Success(CARSS), founded in 2008, operates a federally funded program designed to enhance recruitment and retention of students with science and mathematics majors through academic support services, mentoring, and tutoring.

The College Database also recently cited the University as one of the nation's top 50 Colleges Advancing Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Using data provided by the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) on female student enrollment in STEM programs at colleges across the nation, the Database identified 50 schools offering extensive STEM programs, a high proportion of female students’ enrollment, and significant numbers of female STEM graduates. UAlbany ranked 22nd in the nation and second in New York State with the highest number of women enrolled in biology disciplines.

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About the University at Albany
A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciences, business, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.