This project at Bunker Hill Community College in Massachusetts will test and document effective practices for utilizing scholarships as a bridge from two-year to four-year science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programs for academically talented and low-income community college students and serve as a model for other institutions that are addressing this important national issue. The successful efforts of the college in developing articulation agreements in the targeted disciplines with regional four-year programs will ensure that scholarship recipients have significant opportunities to pursue a four-year degree. A priority of this project is recruiting students who reflect the diversity of the student body at the college, with a focus on women and students of color, in order to prepare them for baccalaureate degrees and high-demand technical careers in STEM. This program will build on a successful prior S-STEM scholarship grant, making it possible for the college to further study and document the model in order to disseminate data-driven analyses of effective practices to other community colleges and universities.

Rewarding Excellence For Leaders in Engineering, Computer Science, Technology, and Science (REFLECTS) will serve academically talented students with demonstrated financial need through scholarships and other support to assist students in completing associate and baccalaureate degrees in STEM majors. Scholarships will support students for two years of study, one year at the community college and one year at a four-year program of the students' choice. The project will employ best practices by implementing intrusive advising by faculty mentors as well as additional supports to assure that students complete their plan of study. The project will also measure the impacts of intrusive faculty mentoring and other activities/supports with the goal of refining the project design, documenting effective practices, and creating a replicable and scalable model that could be adopted by others. Of particular interest are rates of persistence by scholars and completion of associate and baccalaureate degrees. Additionally, the project will provide a faculty mentor, academic support, leadership opportunities, and support related to securing internships and the transfer process to participating students. The objectives of the project are to (a) award 40 REFLECTS scholarships (10 new students per year) for two semesters to academically talented students with demonstrated financial need who are pursuing an associate degree in one of the targeted STEM programs of study; (b) continue scholarship support for REFLECTS Scholars for two additional semesters after transfer as they pursue their baccalaureate degree; (c) create a cohort of REFLECT scholars which reflects the current demographics of the institution; (d) retain at least 90% of REFLECTS scholars to graduation or transfer from the community college and subsequent graduation from their selected-four year institution; (e) provide faculty mentoring for academic planning assistance to REFLECTS Scholars; (f) provide faculty mentoring for assistance with the transfer process to 100% of program graduates as they prepare to transfer to a four-year institution; (g) continue faculty mentoring for program graduates after transfer to four-year institutions; and (h) study the impact of the faculty mentorship activities as they relate to the success of scholars in securing of internships and transferring to four-year institutions.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Undergraduate Education (DUE)
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Michael Davis
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Bunker Hill Community College
United States
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