NASA has awarded Alabama State University a nearly $ 1.2 million grant to improve minority engineering programs, experimental research, and more. ASU is one of six colleges and universities nationwide to receive grants from NASA's Minority Universities Research and Education Project (MUREP).
The grant in the amount of $ 1,198,937.75 covers a three-year budget and is part of a general grant of $ 7 million for the six institutions. MUREP sought proposals from higher education institutions serving minorities for projects aimed at strengthening their support for underrepresented communities. "Creating a future for humanity in the stars and continuing to improve life on Earth are tasks that NASA can only accomplish if it involves all of humanity," said a NASA spokesperson.
Michelle Foster, chair of ASU's Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, submitted the successful application to NASA.
"I am honored and excited that our ASU receives this grant that will help our students expand their vision and reach the goal of becoming engineers," she said. The ASU proposal was titled "Developing NASA Pathways to Engineering and Experimental Research for Student Success."
"Engaging STEM subject matter experts, professional organizations, social science researchers, and industry partners to create a supportive community of engineering students can help NASA achieve its MUREP goal," said Foster.
He said the NASA grant would not have been possible without the participation of ASU President Quinton Ross and ASU Provost Carl Pettis.
“Both President Ross and Provost Pettis have provided me with incredible advice, assessments, and mentoring that have broadened my horizons and knowledge. This grant is a direct result of their involvement in strengthening and promoting STEM subjects at ASU, "said Foster.
Ross and Pettis commended Foster for his scholarship.
I would like to thank Congresswoman Terri Sewell and her staff for their support in helping Alabama State University secure funds that will help advance ASU's initiatives to increase student and minority participation in STEM-related fields, ”he said. Ross.
Pettis said the grant is another opportunity to promote student success. "This grant from NASA allows us to provide additional research opportunities for students in collaboration with partner institutions," he said.
The other institutions that receive NASA grants are the University of Massachusetts Boston, Florida A&M University, JF Drake State Technical College in Hunt sville, Navajo Technical University in Crownpoint, New Mexico, and Texas A&M University.
Foster said it's important to help increase the number of minority students entering STEM-related programs and careers, especially engineering.
“The data tells us that only 2% nationwide of minority students have degrees or are employed in engineering and physics. Our new grant from NASA allows our ASU students to study in those areas and earn degrees in them, which is important for increasing diversity, ”he said.