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A&M-Kingsville Part of Four-University Alliance Awarded $2.8 Million by NSF

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Texas A&M University-Kingsville is part of a four-school educational alliance awarded a $2.8 million grant over 60 months from the National Science Foundation (NSF).

The Texas A&M University System AGEP Alliance—which includes A&M-Kingsville, along with Texas A&M University, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and Prairie View A&M University—will use the grant to develop, implement and study a new model for advancing underrepresented minority doctoral candidates in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to careers in academia. 

Dr. Linda Challoo, professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Counseling and associate dean for Research and Graduate Studies, will serve as the Principal Investigator (PI) and lead the effort for Texas A&M-Kingsville. Co-PIs from A&M-Kingsville include Drs. Marybeth Green, associate professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Counseling; Rajab Challoo, professor and chair of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; Lee Clapp, professor in the Department of Environmental Engineering and the Frank H. Dotterweich College of Engineering interim associate dean for research and graduate studies; and Shad Nelson, dean of the Dick and Mary Lewis Kleberg College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences. 

The Texas A&M System University Alliance, created in response to the NSF’s Alliances for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) program, will follow the doctoral candidates as they complete their degrees, enter postdoctoral research positions and progress through faculty positions. The NSF AGEP program seeks to advance knowledge about models to improve pathways to the professoriate and improve the success of historically underrepresented minority graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty in specific STEM disciplines or STEM-education research fields. 

The Texas A&M University System AGEP Alliance model development, implementation and studies will focus on unique interventions, including individualized development plans for participants as they transition from dissertation stage to postdoctoral scholar to faculty. The Texas A&M University System Alliance research model (TxARM) provides participants with professional development opportunities related to communication, writing, networking and job preparation or transition. TxARM also provides participants with mentors at the institutional and field-specific expert levels and offers opportunities to experience academic culture and activities at historically black colleges and universities and international institutions. 

Dr. Karen Butler-Purry, interim vice president for research and associate provost for graduate and professional studies at Texas A&M University-College Station, will lead the alliance project. Dr. Scott King, associate professor and department chair, Department of Computing Sciences, College of Science and Engineering will lead and represent Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. Dr. Gloria Regisford, professor, Department of Biology, the Marvin D. and June Samuel Brailsford College of Arts and Sciences, will lead and represent Prairie View A&M University. 

In addition, the integrated social science research component of the model—led by Adrienne Carter-Sowell, associate professor, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and the Africana Studies Program, College of Liberal Arts, Texas A&M University—will address the effects of stigmatization on adult non-STEM and STEM undergraduate African American and Hispanic American students. 


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