The project is designed to improve the enrollment, persistence, retention, graduation and transfer of disadvantaged, underrepresented, and academically talented students in science, computer science, engineering, and mathematics majors. The present project is based on a successful CSEMS project. The college's student body is comprised largely of disadvantaged and underrepresented students, two-thirds of whom receive financial aid, have a migrant farming background, or are first generation college students.
During the project's five years, 100 scholarships are being awarded to students in STEM majors in two categories: incoming freshman with demonstrated academic ability; and current students with demonstrated academic ability. Scholarship awards can be up to $5,000 over two years, based on financial need.
Scholarship recipients are recruited on the college campus and at regional feeder high schools through outreach activities on campus and at regional high schools, and through the electronic and hard copy dissemination of detailed program information. The S-STEM project links and leverages existing resources providing all scholarship recipients access to: academic support; tutoring; priority registration; counseling; educational planning; academic excellence workshops; internships; career development; priority transfer support; additional financial aid; and state-of-the-art computer and technological equipment and laboratories.