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NASA Grants $587K to Minority Institutions to Advance STEM Education; Mike Kincaid, Karen Marrongelle Quoted

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Mike Kincaid
Mike Kincaid

NASA has awarded 14 planning grants, totalling more than $587,000 to Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) through its Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP), the administration reported on Tuesday

"Efforts with Minority Serving Institutions to broaden student participation exemplify the work of the federal coordination in STEM community and highlight the direct benefit to students when agencies work together," said Mike Kincaid, NASA associate administrator for STEM Engagement. "We look forward to see the results of this partnership."

NASA awarded the grants as part of the agency's Office of STEM Engagement, and are part of a phased partnership effort with the National Science Foundation (NSF). 

The funding will boost the development of coalitions aimed at broadening participation in engineering, following the goals of the NSF Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (INCLUDES) initiative.

Through planning grant awards, the lead MSIs have developed coalitions with a variety of partners, including other MSIs, non-MSIs, industry, non-profit organizations and other non-governmental organizations.

The project will form a network to promote interagency collaboration and provide STEM knowledge to the next generation of underrepresented children.

The awardees include: California State University, Northridge and San Bernardino; Florida A&M University; Navajo Technical College; New Mexico State University, Las Cruces; North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro; Southern University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Texas A&M University, Kingsville; University of Hawaii, Honolulu;University of Massachusetts, Boston; University of Texas, El Paso; University of Texas, San Antonio.

"We value NASA's support for the vision of the NSF INCLUDES initiative, as we work collaboratively for inclusive change to the STEM workforce, and we look forward to the outcomes of the catalytic work that will be conducted through these planning grants," said Karen Marrongelle, assistant director of NSF's Directorate for Education and Human Resources.