Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

SPC will use grant to fund STEM scholarships for women, minorities

ST. PETERSBURG — Natural sciences faculty at St. Petersburg College are awaiting the arrival of a new core of STEM-focused students. With a $520,000 grant through the National Science Foundation, the college will provide up to 80 female and minority students access to scholarships.

Students seeking degrees in science, technology, engineering or mathematics at St. Petersburg College are eligible to receive a $6,500 scholarship by next spring. The scholarship for academically qualified, low-income students ensures that they can focus more on their degrees and developing careers.

"We really looked to how we could provide scholarships," said Jackie Skryd, executive director of grants development at SPC. "It really enhances all that we do at the college on a daily basis instead of a stand-alone program."

The National Science Foundation provided funding to SPC from 2007 to 2012 for the college's STEM programs. The previous grant provided for 152 students. About 60 percent of those were men. Only 12 percent overall were Hispanic, and 9 percent black. With a second round of funding, SPC wanted to provide scholarships to students in financial need and historically underrepresented.

"Often students that would like to pursue degrees in a science are financially unable," said John Chapin, dean of natural sciences.

Students eligible for the scholarship must have completed college algebra and at least one STEM course at St. Petersburg College and be enrolled full-time as a Pell grant recipient. With a federal Pell grant, the college scholarship covers any remaining student expenses, Skryd said.

The scholarship program provides for students to receive extended faculty support. The College Experience, a St. Petersburg College initiative, offers academic and career advising, access to tutors and career mentors. Campus Faculty Champions are selected within the STEM programs to provide students a "road map to graduation," with set academic and career goals.

"(Students) will have demonstrated an excitement about science and intent to become a science person," Chapin said. "It's just going to increase the opportunities for students to be placed in environments where they can practice what they're learning."

The college works to provide students access to careers quickly through partnerships with Tampa Bay area employers for internships and job shadowing. Students involved in the sciences have been placed in internships at C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center and worked with faculty on undergraduate research, Chapin said.

"It's more than just, we'll pay your tuition," Skryd said. "We really want you to have a relevant, real-world experience in the STEM area, so that you can really apply what you're learning."

SPC will use grant to fund STEM scholarships for women, minorities 08/07/14 [Last modified: Thursday, August 7, 2014 11:34am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect


    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  2. Hopes fade after landslide destroys Chinese village (w/video)


    Crews searching through the night in the rubble left by a landslide that buried a mountain village under tons of soil and rocks in southwestern China found 15 bodies, but more than 110 more people remained missing.

    Vehicles and people line a road leading to the site of a landslide in Xinmo village in Mao County on Saturday in southwestern China’s Sichuan Province. More than 100 people remained missing after the village was buried under tons of rocks and soil.
  3. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  4. Thousands converge in two St. Pete locations celebrating LGBT rights

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom Rockhill didn't know what to expect Saturday, but by noon people were knocking on the door of his bar Right Around the Corner in Grand Central.

    (From left to right) Emma Chalut 18, gets a rainbow sticker on her cheek from her sister Ellie, 15 both of Jacksonville before the annual St. Pete Pride parade in downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday. This year the route was changed from the Grand Central and Kenwood area to Bayshore Drive.
[EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  5. Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald dies

    TALLAHASSEE — A former Florida Supreme Court justice, who wrote a decision that prevented lawyers from excluding jurors because of their race, has died.

    Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald died Saturday, the court said in a statement. He was 93.