: The City Colleges of Chicago (CCC) Bridges to Baccalaureate Project will involve 50 students (16, 18 and 16 in the first, second and third year respectively, 20 of whom are duplicated) from its Olive Harvey, Harold Washington and the Harry S. Truman campuses. The project will identify, recruit, educate, mentor, and support the scientific and biomedical research interest of a group of Underrepresented Minority (URM), to transition to University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), a baccalaureate, masters and doctoral degree granting institution.
The aim i s to 1) create an appropriate pool of qualified URM students; 2) ensure the transfer of URM's to a four year institution with a major in biomedical sciences 2) Retain students in the biomedical discipline; 3) increase the number of URM who graduate with BA/BS in their chosen biomedical areas; and, 5) ultimately make available the intellectual talents of underrepresented minority group to the biomedical science research enterprise and the nation. The project will involve eight highly committed faculty and administrators from CCC and UIC who will serve as the project steering committee. The involvement of minorities, especially Blacks and Latinos, in biomedicine and biomedical research is very crucial to achieving the heath promotion and disease prevention objectives of Healthy People 2010 because their communities are more proportionally represented in mortality and morbidity data. Paradoxically, the number of minorities involved in scientific research, or work as scientists is very small due to many barriers. This Project will ameliorate the impact of the barriers by enabling a group of committed faculty at CCC and the UIC to implement a series of activities throughout the academic year and the summer. The activities will include: establishment of a Center for Science Success to ensure the availability of a pool of qualified students, course selection, mentoring, appropriate course sequencing, counseling, academic advisory and enrichment, computer technology training, introduction to laboratory science and public health research. Students will rotate between laboratories at UIC and CCC. The project will also involve students in seminars and scientific conferences. We anticipate that over 75% of students that participate in this project will proceed to a four-year college to pursue and graduate in biomedical discipline.