Striving for Excellence:
04 | Preparation for Mathematics and Sciences
Cal State Fullerton is creating and enhancing programs and research that promote STEM study, in response to what experts have called the crisis of the eroding American base of science, technology, engineering and math. Partnerships between CSUF and community groups, such as the Fullerton Chamber of Commerce, also are forming in an effort to prepare future scientists. Additionally, the College of Education is establishing strategies for recruiting and preparing new math and science teachers.
“It is absolutely imperative for us to increase the number of people in the STEM fields if we’re going to stay competitive in this world,” says President Milton A. Gordon. “We are trying to give students who are going into the STEM fields more support, because math and science are not considered attractive to many students.” Here are just a glimpse of Cal State Fullerton’s efforts to support STEM outreach.
The Study 25-35 Campaign targets freshmen and encourages them to spend more time studying science and math. Student reaction to the study campaign has been positive, says Bill Hoese, associate professor of biological science. “Because college is so different from high school, I think many students appreciate guidance on how much to study,” Hoese says.
The Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC) Program, established more than a decade ago, exposes undergraduate students to various types of research and the skills necessary to enter and succeed in graduate programs.
The Peer Group Program is for freshmen studying math, science, engineering and computer science. One peer adviser is assigned to each college and serves as a group facilitator for peer group members. The adviser is also responsible for planning weekly group meetings. Each week, the groups discuss different topics, such as time management, study skills, campus resources and career options.
The ECS Scholars Program places first-year students majoring in engineering or computer science in a “learning community.” They take core classes together and attend study group sessions that assist with their learning. Tutors are assigned to work with students and attend classes with them, as well as lead study group sessions.