This three year REU Site program at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) entitled" Internships in Nanosystems Science, Engineering, and Technology" (INSET), will create education and research opportunities for community college students, promoting their future academic and career success in science and engineering through multi-tiered mentorship. The objectives of the INSET program aim to: (1) encourage community college students' pursuit of research careers through the development of professional scientific skills in investigation, communication and collaboration; (2) promote the successful transfer of a diverse cohort of community college students to 4-year institutions, and encourage their pursuit of graduate education; (3) nurture the professional development of research mentors through campus-wide training workshops and networking; and (4) enhance the capacity of research universities to support community college transfer students.

The INSET program will be hosted by the California NanoSystems Institute where research explores the richness of opportunities in forming new materials and complex systems by integrating nanoscale building blocks from both biological and electronic materials. Participants in this program will gain hands-on experience in the development of cutting-edge technologies that fall outside the traditional boundaries of science and engineering disciplines. Additionally, the INSET program will collaborate with the Center for Nanotechnology and Society, which will engage students in discussions and research projects on the societal impacts of new technologies. This collaboration will foster students' and researchers' abilities to enable broadly multi-disciplinary research, engaging not only the natural sciences and engineering, but also social sciences and mathematics.

Recruitment efforts for INSET will build on established relationships with California community colleges that have large underrepresented and disadvantaged populations. This program will enhance the capacity of other institutions to support community college transfer students by raising the profile of high-achieving community college students, promoting successful university/community college partnership models, and disseminating INSET evaluation findings through publications and professional conferences.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Engineering Education and Centers (EEC)
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Esther Bolding
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University of California Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara
United States
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