(left to right) Gabriel Martinez, Jose Lozano, Daniel Rodriguez, Daniel Ortuno, Carlos Martinez, and Luke Marrs. Photo credit: Jeannie Peng-Armao, San Jacinto College marketing department
Students promote value of STEM education through NSF funded scholarship program
Jeannie Peng-Armao-- July 25, 2012
PASADENA, Texas — Six San Jacinto College students are spending this summer encouraging their younger peers to consider careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) as part of their internships with the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP) scholarship program through the National Science Foundation (NSF).
This year's LSAMP Summer Internship recipients are Gabriel Martinez, Jose Lozano, Carlos Martinez, Daniel Rodriguez, Daniel Ortuno, and Luke Marrs. Each student participates in a ten-week intensive program that develops research skills in robotics, cultivates programming languages and website construction, and promotes self-confidence and independence through interaction with industry and middle school students in robotics. Interns must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.75 and plan to transfer to a university in a STEM-related field of study. Faculty mentorships are also a key component of the College’s LSAMP program.
"The scholarship internship recipients must be passionate about STEM," said Sharon Sledge, Central Campus math professor and this year's president of the Texas Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges. "They must also be willing to share their STEM knowledge and enthusiasm with students of all ages.”
Sledge added that by the end of the internship, the students will have received professional certification in ROBOTC, a robotics programming language for educational robotics and competitions; built four websites; communicated with more than 20 STEM-related companies; and have assisted in educating others to appreciate STEM through robotics.
Gabriel Martinez serves as lead robotics programmer during this summer’s robotics camps at Central. He is studying theoretical physics and plans on transferring to the University of Houston.
"The internship part of this scholarship program is very beneficial in that it helps develop people skills, and helps you learn how to work under pressure and how to guide others in robotics," said Martinez. "I'm very grateful for this opportunity. It certainly helps with the bills."
This is the College's 13th year in awarding LSAMP scholarships. The NSF program assists universities and colleges in diversifying the STEM workforce through their efforts at significantly increasing the numbers of students successfully completing high quality degree programs in those related disciplines. Particular emphasis is placed on transforming STEM education through innovative recruitment and retention strategies and experiences in support of groups historically under-represented in STEM disciplines: African-Americans, Alaskan Natives, American Indians, Hispanic Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Native Pacific Islanders.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. The Achieving the Dream Leader College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of 30,000 students in more than 200 degree and certificate options, including university transfer and career preparation. Students also benefit from the College’s job training programs, renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $630 million each year to the Texas workforce. San Jacinto College. Your Goals. Your College.
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