Xavier University of Louisiana’s Undergraduate STEM program is recognized with a $500,000 grant from UNCF/Merck Science Initiative (UMSI), in conjunction with the UNCF Institute for Capacity Building, for a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Capacity Building Program. As the only recipient of this grant, Xavier University was able to demonstrate the strength of their STEM program and stand out in UMSI’s competitive selection process.
STEM occupations generate technological changes that shape all other occupations. Minorities are historically under represented in STEM fields and with projections of 1.2 million new STEM jobs over the next six years according to a study by Georgetown University, Xavier University is poised to change this.
“With support from UMSI, Xavier University is making a difference, not only in this important field, but in the lives of the students we’ll be able to help with this grant,” Xavier University President Norman C. Francis states, “We are proud to be the only recipient of this grant which will nurture STEM students into graduates.”
“Merck’s investment in the promising students and scholars of Xavier University’s STEM program is a major commitment to developing the next generation of researchers and professors in biological science and engineering and an investment in longer and better lives for millions of people not only in America but around the world,” says Michael L. Lomax, Ph.D., UNCF President and CEO. “It also enables Xavier University’s STEM program to have a significant impact on increasing the number of African Americans who enter this field and on expanding the pipeline of future STEM professionals.”
Over the next four years Xavier University will use the STEM Capacity Building Program to grow the number of students graduating with a STEM degree and pursuing research careers in the biological and chemical sciences. By providing assistance to students at risk of incompletion, Xavier University will ensure outside elements will not be an obstacle to obtaining a STEM degree. This $500,000 grant awarded by UMSI will have a significant impact on the STEM graduation rates at Xavier University. In turn, Xavier University graduates will be in position to take advantage of the significant job growth this field is projected to have.
For more information on Xavier University’s STEM program please visit: http://www.xula.edu/