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Nsf Seeks New Approach to Helping Minority Students in Science


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National Science Foundation Director Arden L. Bement Jr.

National Science Foundation Director Arden L. Bement Jr. says the number of minority undergraduates majoring in science is not increasing nearly fast enough.

Credit: National Governors Association

U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) programs that assist specific racial and ethnic groups would be consolidated under a new proposal from the agency.

According to the Obama administration's budget recommendations for the 2011 fiscal year, the Historically Black Colleges and Universities Undergraduate Program, the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, and the Tribal Colleges and Universities Program would be replaced by the $103 million Comprehensive Broadening Participation of Undergraduates in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) program, which would be allotted 14 percent more in funding than the three programs currently receive.

NSF director Arden L. Bement Jr. says the number of minority students majoring in the sciences was not increasing fast enough under the old approach. "Linear growth is no longer acceptable, so we have to go into geometric growth," Bement says.

From The Chronicle of Higher Education
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