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Catalying the Normalization of Inclusion through Broader Engagement

2017 SIAM Conference on Computational Science and Engineering

Catalying the Normalization of Inclusion through Broader Engagement

Abstract. Developing the nation’s capacity for innovation and excellence in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is central to the U.S. global competitiveness.  STEM fields have been historically dominated by a white and male population, however data indicates that there has been movement towards diversification in academics and employment.  Yet, the underrepresentation of women and minorities continues to be problematic, especially in certain fields such as computing, physical sciences and engineering.  For example, under-represented minorities (blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans) have seen progress with Hispanics earning 20% of all S&E associate degrees awarded to US citizens and permanent residents and blacks earning 14% in 2012.  For the first time, Hispanics outnumbered Asians/Pacific Islanders in S&E bachelor degrees earned with Hispanics receiving 10.3% and Asian Pacific Islanders receiving 9.7% and blacks earning nearly 9% in 2012.  However, Asians/Pacific Islanders earned almost 10% of the S&E doctoral degrees while blacks earned 5% and Hispanics earned 6%.  In computer science, the number of blacks earning PhDs in 2006 was so low it was hardly noticeable at less than 2%.

To address this need, Sustainable Horizons Institute developed an integrated and multi-faceted intervention model which includes academic preparation, psychosocial support, mentoring, career, professional, and leadership development.  During this discussion, a review of the current data and trends will inform an examination of the key elements of the model which are posited as a promising solution to creating a more inclusive and diverse S&T workforce.