The purpose of this application is to obtain funding for five years to support research training of 33 students during their freshman and sophomore years in the ESTEEMED Scholars Program at UMBC.
The aim i s to recruit, retain and train undergraduate freshman and sophomores from groups underrepresented in STEM fields such as biochemistry, chemistry, biological sciences, chemistry, chemical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, mathematics, mechanical engineering, and physics, and through research experiences, mentoring and educational activities prepare them to enter and succeed in an advanced honors program, such as our MARC U*STAR Program, Honors College, or HHMI Scholars Program with the ultimate goal of pursuing a PhD or MD/PhD. This program will maximize the access to research careers in biomedical research for these students from historically underrepresented groups, specifically those interested in research relating to bio/medical engineering and imaging. The ESTEEMED program is deliberately structured, intensive, and comprehensive with key components including a summer bridge program, scholarship support, faculty involvement, study groups, summer and academic year research experiences, structured mentoring (faculty and peer), professional advising and coaching, strong programmatic values, and family support. These features are designed to create an environment that continually challenges, supports, and prepares competitively selected students to meet and exceed the expectations of the academy, beginning in their pre-freshman summer through sophomore summer, preparing them for advanced research in their junior and seniors, followed by graduate research. ESTEEMED Scholars will be selected through the Meyerhoff Scholars Program application process, specifically identifying students who have demonstrated a strong desire to pursue careers in biomedical research. The Program begins with a mandatory six-week Summer Bridge Program and continues in the freshman and sophomore academic years with foundational STEM courses and engaging programming. All students will participate in a summer research experience after their sophomore year. The Co-PI/PD (a tenured female engineer with a strong research program and a record mentoring in the lab students from diverse backgrounds) and the second Co-PI/PD (current PI/PD of the UMBC MARC program and has trained over 40 undergraduates) will guide the program design. The efficacy of the program will be monitored by a multi-method evaluation study assessing both short-term and long-term outcomes.
This application requests support for an Enhancing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Educational Diversity (ESTEEMED) Research Education Experiences (R25) grant for the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). This intensive program aims to recruit and train undergraduate freshman and sophomores from groups that are underrepresented in biomedical research. Through research experiences, mentoring and educational activities, the ESTEEMED Program will prepare participants to enter and succeed in an Advanced Honors Program, such as the UMBC MARC U*STAR (MARC) Program, the UMBC Honors College, or UMBC HHMI Scholars Program, with the ultimate goal of pursuing a PhD or MD/PhD that leads to a biomedical research career.