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New Mexico State University
New Mexico Alliance for Minority Participation
College of Engineering

New Mexico AMP Program Approach

Strategic Areas and Program Activities:


Strategic Areas and Program Activities:

Collectively, the New Mexico AMP represents a comprehensive approach to the recruitment, retention, and progression of STEM students. The program's strategic areas and related activities focus on improvement of academic preparedness, which addresses the continuing need to provide access for underrepresented students. In addition, the program strengthens the teaching and learning processes of students and encourages them to consider academic careers. The individual components are summarized below:

Outreach and Recruitment

-For grade 8-12 outreach, New Mexico AMP's efforts include the New Mexico MESA Scholarships that are available to students who participate in the New Mexico Math, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) program and who intend to major in a STEM discipline.
-At the community college level, the program offers SMET 101, "Introduction to Science, Math, Engineering and Technology," a course that is taught at several sites across the state. SMET 101 focuses on critical thinking and problem solving skills and helps students clearly determine and articulate their academic and career plans and address articulation and transfer issues. Instructors are brought to NMSU annually for training and professional development activities.
-Transfer Scholarships are available to New Mexico AMP students transferring from a two-year to a four-year institution to pursue a degree in a STEM discipline. These scholarships are available to community college students as they begin their first semester at a four-year institution, providing financial assistance during the student's first semester at the university. In many cases, the student is also offered free tutoring and mentoring services throughout the first year.

Undergraduate Education

SMET 101 is offered at the university level with an added emphasis on retention and completion as well as the thinking and learning skills that are part of the course's basic design. Undergraduates are also given opportunities to participate in other leveraged programs, such as the Integrated Learning Community (ILC) and the Computer Science, Engineering, and Math Scholarship(CSEMS) program.

Research and Graduate School Preparation

The undergraduate research and graduate school preparation components are addressed primarily through the Undergraduate Research Assistantship (URA) Program that matches students with faculty mentors to do hands-on laboratory research for an academic year or summer. At NMSU, URA students attend writing workshops, produce technical reports, and present their research at the New Mexico AMP Student Research Conference or other professional conferences. URA students are encouraged and helped to prepare for graduate school and to meet the expectations of industry and government internships and employment.

The most exciting development in New Mexico AMP's ability to develop future STEM faculty and professionals was the funding of the first NSF Bridge to the Doctorate Program at NMSU in Summer 2003. The program is designed to move students with a bachelor's degree through a master's degree and into a Ph.D. program. In addition to financial support, participating students have access to professional development workshops, involvement with the New Mexico AGEP Program, a new engineering graduate seminar, editorial assistance with thesis preparation, networking with faculty, and assistance in identifying additional fellowships and grant opportunities.

Since 2003, five (5) cohorts have been funded allowing New Mexico Amp to sponsor students who completed a B.S. degree in a targeted STEM discipline and who have identified a Ph.D. as their educational goal. All cohorts are, supported through the first two years of graduate study at NMSU, focusing strongly on increasing students' knowledge and commitment of the opportunities available to Ph.D. recipients in their respective fields, thereby facilitating their progress toward the Ph.D. These supplemental awards have enhanced New Mexico AMP's existing relationship with New Mexico AGEP and have allowed AMP-supported undergraduate students to make the critical transition to graduate education.
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New Mexico AMP Student Research Conference

Across each program activity, the annual New Mexico AMP Student Research Conference remains a constant. The goal of the conference is to provide students with the opportunity to gain presentation experience, to serve as role models for other students, to learn about professional activities in STEM, and to make the connection between their current academic and future professional life. Students are encouraged to create networks with faculty and professionals in their discipline.

The conference gives university students opportunities for professional level research presentations, workshops, panel presentations, and speakers. This annual event is also open to New Mexico MESA junior and senior-level high school students and community college students. For these groups, the conference offers an opportunity to see a university campus and to participate in workshops, discussions, and research presentations. Most of the student research presentations are given by university-level students; however, community college students are encouraged to present any faculty-mentored projects they might be doing as part of the Undergraduate Research Assistantship (URA) program or to enter classroom/capstone projects in a non-competitive poster format. New Mexico AMP offers professional development stipends for community college students and Institutional Coordinators to attend New Mexico AMP student conference, thus allowing students to attend who might not otherwise be able to participate.

Conclusion

All of New Mexico AMP's programs and activities are designed to guide qualified students into leadership positions in industry, academia, and entrepreneurial pursuits. We believe that this emphasis on a comprehensive approach to student recruitment, retention, and graduation allows for greater program flexibility while helping to ensure consistency and efficient use of resources.
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