William Paterson University Awarded ‘Transformative’ STEM Grant

WAYNE, NJ — William Paterson University was awarded a five-year, $1 million Scholarships-in-STEM grant from the National Science Foundation, the university announced.

The grant will support WPU students majoring in mathematics and computer science through scholarships and mentoring, according to the university.

“The overall goal of this project is to increase STEM degree completion of low-income, high achieving undergraduates with demonstrated financial need,” says Venkat Sharma, dean of the College of Science and Health, who serves as the team’s STEM administrator. “I congratulate all of our colleagues for their hard work in obtaining this highly competitive and transformative grant.”

Over the five-year duration, the project will support 26 first-year and transfer students who are pursuing bachelor’s degrees in mathematics, computer science, or computer information technology.

First year students will receive scholarship support for up to four years and transfer students will receive up to two years of scholarship support, the university said.

With this grant award, William Paterson intends to enroll three cohorts of low-income, academically talented students as mathematics and computer science (MaCS) scholars and support them with scholarships.

The University will also work to improve year-over-year retention rates for MaCS scholars who are first-time, full-time, first-year or transfer students, and improve graduation rates for all MaCS scholars.

Additionally, the funds will support a research study that investigates the relationship between college retention for low-income students and strength-based, culturally responsive mentoring. The proposed project will also refine the recruitment pipeline of females into the target STEM majors, which will increase enrollment and, consequentially, increase the number of underrepresented STEM graduates entering the workforce.

This grant will also allow the University to develop leadership programs at its seven partner schools, the university said. These include:

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