216 Online Climate and Weather Education for Underrepresented Undergraduate Students

Monday, 11 January 2016
Kazuhiro Sonoda, Heritage University, Toppenish, WA

Heritage University (HU) is a nonprofit, independent, non-denominational, accredited institution of higher education, with an enrollment of 861 undergraduate students and 596 graduate students in Fall 2014. The university main campus is located in town of Toppenish, Washington, within the Yakama Indian Reservation. HU is also recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI). Our mission is to provide quality, accessible baccalaureate and master's degrees to populations that, for reasons of location, poverty, or cultural background, have been denied these opportunities in the past. HU has been offering AMS Weather Studies, Climate Studies and Ocean Studies courses for last 5 years to meet needs of environmental sciences and studies program as upper division electives while lower division courses are provided to meet non-science major student general education science requirements. In this paper, we have identified benefits, challenges, difficulties and future plans related to implementation of AMS courses to mostly minority students in rural areas.
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