Reza Khanbilvardi1, Vernon Morris2, Paulinus Chigbu3, and Michael Abazinge4
1NOAA-CREST Center, The City College of New York, email@example.com,NY 2NCAS, Howard University, Washington DC 3LMRCSC, University of Maryland, Eastern Shore,MD 4ECSC, Florida A & M University, Tallahassee, FL
In an increasingly dynamic and global marketplace, STEM professionals are critical to American innovation and competitiveness. The need to strengthen US STEM talent pool is well echoed across the nation by the government, policy makers, educators and scientific community. Given the current trend of US Demography - with a 2050 projection of US population with less than 50% white and Euro-Americans, there is a strong need to increase the diversity of the STEM workforce in order for US to remain the Global leader in the knowledge-discovery enterprise and sustain its economy for future generations. Besides, accomplishing NOAA's challenging vision for the future, i.e., resilient ecosystems, communities and economies, requires an inclusive, diverse, highly skilled, motivated and effective workforce that reflects the communities it serves. In 2001 NOAA's Educational Partnership Program (EPP) with 4 Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) was established through a national competition by creating cooperative science centers which cover 13 states and 21 universities across the nation. Through this partnership with MSIs NOAA's EPP strived to increase the underrepresented population trained in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), to help reduce the educational gap between minority and non-minority population groups. This effort is essential for meeting the future workforce needs of the agency and the nation. Through this paper, the authors will present critical elements of the programs such as LOGIC Model, Holistic Student Development Plan, Core Competency, in developing a nationally recognized education model that has built upon key elements such as -integrating research and training, building infrastructure, community outreach and engagement, potential societal benefits of professional training and human resource development, and creating a diverse workforce of STEM professionals. The presentation will include qualitative and quantitative outcomes of the program and some success stories.