UNC-Chapel Hill – SELF
AWARD YEAR: 2019
UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA-CHAPEL HILL
INSTITUTE FOR THE ENVIRONMENT
DIRECTOR: MEGAN HUGHES - MEGANUGHES@UNC.EDU
MANAGER, STEM DIVERSITY PROGRAM
CHAPEL HILL, NC
PROJECT TITLE: STEM EXPERIENCES IN THE LAB AND FIELD (SELF) FOR ROBESON EARLY COLLEGE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS
SELF will provide a two-week summer field study for rising juniors and seniors and a five-week mentored summer research experience at UNC-CH for rising advanced seniors. In the summer field study, local sites will serve as living laboratories, giving students an opportunity to experience personally relevant environmental health science and geoscience exploration. Components of the summer field study will include the following: data collection and investigation at field sites; sessions with scientists to learn about the research process; and an introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS). During the summer research experience at UNC-CH, RECHS students will be paired with an environmental health or geoscience faculty mentor and will work in their labs for 30 hours/ week, conducting research alongside the lab team. Additionally, geology field trips will be offered during the academic years. Two day-trips and one overnight camping experience to locations of ecological, geological, and/or hydrological significance in North Carolina will provide opportunities for hands on, minds on learning. Students will also meet scientists conducting field research and begin to think about research as part of STEM.
Over three years, 130 RECHS students will be served by the SELF program, increasing their environmental science and health knowledge and skills through field and lab experiences and fostering interest in STEM internships and college/career pathways.