The National Science Foundation has awarded the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley a $249,992 grant for the NSF INCLUDES Symposium for ADVANCING STEM Latinas in Academic Careers. The federal funds will be made available to UTRGV on Aug. 1. The funding allows UTRGV to place emphasis on increasing the number of Latinas in STEM workforce areas.
The NSF symposium will provide a national platform to discuss and address the issues that affect Latinas in STEM careers. This includes pathways, recruitment, retention and advancement. It will promote research, innovation and discovery that invigorates economic growth through STEM. The symposium will allow Latina women to both learn and develop the skills necessary to advance in these fields.
“For years, UTRGV has been working to level the playing field and put women in the Rio Grande Valley on the path to prosperity,” Congressman Vicente Gonzalez said. “This NSF funding, combined with existing programs, will enable UTRGV to continue putting women on the map and emerge as a powerhouse for Latina students in STEM.”
“We are very excited that the NSF has funded this project, which will address the issues that affect Latinas in STEM, therefore broadening their participation and inclusion in higher education,” principal Investigator and Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs and Diversity Ala Qubbaj said. “Such issues are important in light of the vast underrepresentation of Latinas in STEM careers.”
The program starts Aug. 1 and ends July 31, 2020. The grant also funds a two-part NSF INCLUDES symposium in spring 2019 and 2020 in South Padre Island. It will include presentations from scholars whose research focuses on Latinas in STEM. It will also include individual perspectives from Latina STEM faculty.
Symposium lessons will be part of a compilation volume for future publication. This will then be available as a resource for other academics.