Posted June 06, 2012 by

$400,000 Awarded to College Fund for Internships for Women/Minorities in STEM Fields

College students who are interested in the STEM fields have a chance to gain experience this summer that may potentially lead to job opportunities.

The Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) is encouraging employers across the country to recruit minority students for job opportunities related to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). “Many students start out pursuing STEM degrees, but they often end up discouraged, and change their major,” states Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., TMCF’s President & CEO. “We want to help ensure these students get the attention and guidance they need to not only graduate, but to find good jobs in their chosen STEM fields.”

In 2010, Bayer Corporation concluded that, “significant numbers of women and underrepresented minorities are missing from the U.S. STEM workforce today because they were not identified, encouraged or nurtured to pursue STEM studies early on.” According to the data, although minority students express as much desire to pursue STEM careers as their peers, they are failing to grasp the fundamentals of science and math in elementary school, and therefore are not prepared to tackle STEM courses in high school and college. The country’s public Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs) know this reality well, and have developed programmatic interventions to help fill this education gap so that their graduates are prepared to compete after earning STEM degrees.

In an effort to recruit talented minority students for STEM jobs upon graduation, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) recently awarded TMCF nearly $400,000.00 to fund a 10-week summer internship program that will introduce the brightest STEM students to the USDA and APHIS.  This exciting program will place thirty-seven public HBCU students who have an interest in agriculture-related disciplines within the USDA/APHIS. Students will receive extensive hands-on training in one of twenty locations across the country where they will have the opportunity to work in their selected program area. “APHIS, like USDA, is committed to and values a diverse workplace. Investing in students and student internships like those sponsored by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund will help ensure APHIS’ future workforce is as diverse as it can be,” states Dr. Gregory L. Parham, Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

“As we celebrate 25 years providing support to public HBCUs, we have renewed our focus on identifying premium job opportunities for our best and brightest students. The USDA/APHIS program is a wonderful example of the first step in the process. TMCF interns will have the chance this summer to show USDA staff what public HBCUs are producing. Our goal is that many of these internships will lead to full-time jobs,” states Mr. Taylor, Jr.

 

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Posted in Awards and Recognition, Diversity, Internships, Recruitment Strategies | Tagged Tagged , , , ,