With funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF), UC Riverside has bestowed a $30,000 stipend and a full-ride scholarship to nine UC Riverside graduate students enrolled in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs. The goal of the funds is to promote involvement and attract more underrepresented minority students to STEM fields. The funds are part of a two-year, $988,000 training grant that is distributed by the California Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Bridge to the Doctorate (CAMP-BD).
As a part of the grant, recipients will be involved in outreach efforts made to enlighten local youth on the value of a college education and the importance of STEM fields. “At UCR, our CAMP-BD fellows will also be involved in outreach activities that will support not only undergraduates at UCR but also K-12 students in the surrounding communities who may not be familiar with the benefits of higher education and, more importantly, understand that such opportunities are available and accessible to them,” stated Cardullo. Award-recipient Philip Soto was especially fond of this aspect of the program, stating, “It also provides me with opportunities to mentor other students. This will help me reach out to the community and grow as an individual.”
Cardullo pointed out that the grant would ease the financial burden faced by graduate students and improve the likelihood of a student’s desire to pursue a Ph.D. “The CAMP-BD program allowed me to get into a Ph.D. program right out of undergraduate school rather than having to do twice the work and spend twice the money, obtaining a master’s first and then a Ph.D.,” noted Mackenzie Alvarez in an article by the UC Riverside Newsroom.