STEM Mentor Program

Sponsors

VCU's Office of Multicultural Student Affairs and VCU's Virginia-North Carolina Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (VA-NC LSAMP)

OMSA's Mission

The Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA) provides supportive services and resources to underserved and underrepresented students from ethnic, racial and other cultural groups at the university. Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) is committed to a multicultural, diverse student body, and OMSA offers assistance to students and faculty in support of this commitment.

VA-NC LSAMP Mission

The Virginia-North Carolina Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (VA-NC LSAMP) at VCU is a comprehensive, interdisciplinary, regional alliance of eight institutions from Virginia and North Carolina charged with commitment to increase the following over five years (2007-2012):

  • The quality and quantity of African American, Hispanic, and Native American students successfully completing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Baccalaureate degree programs.
  • The number of interested students that are academically qualified and successfully matriculated to STEM programs at the graduate level.

The alliance is led by the University of Virginia (UVA) and funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) through the LSAMP program.

Description of Mentorship Program

This program will be offered as a pilot program during the 2009-10 academic year as a partnership through VCU's Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, VCU School of Engineering and Virginia-North Carolina Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (VA-NC LSAMP). It is designed to match new students of color with knowledgeable juniors and seniors to better support the acclimation and development of the traditionally underrepresented student populations, specifically within the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Baccalaureate degree programs.

When: 2010 - 11 Academic Year

Target Group:

  • Students who are African American, Hispanic, or Native American.
  • Participants of the Virginia-North Carolina Louis Stokes Alliance Minority Participation (VA-NC LSAMP) program.

Mission:
The mentoring program is designed to support the academic, professional, and cultural development of the racially diverse students of Virginia Commonwealth University with an ultimate objective of increasing retention and graduation rates within the STEM Baccalaureate degree programs.

This experiential learning opportunity provides the prot'eg'e with exposure to variant professionals and perspectives within the STEM program. The mentor/prot'eg'e partnership will: help students engage with the coursework, provide professional development through networking and internships, explore future employment opportunities, and prepare for continuing education.

Goals:

  • Foster a positive relationship between students, faculty, staff and alumnus within STEM majors and/or career fields.
  • Increase recruitment, retention, and graduation rates of the targeted student audience.
  • Prepare creative citizens who are serving and developing society through effective utilization of technology, social values, skills, and VCU community resources.
  • Graduate outstanding competitors and a qualified workforce to meet the markets' changing requirements.

Participants:

  • Prot'eg'e - Freshman and First Year Transfer Students enrolled in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) degree programs.
  • Mentor - Sophomore, Junior and Senior students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Baccalaureate degree programs.

Partnerships:

  • Virginia Mentoring Partnership

Training:

  • Virginia Mentoring Partnership

Requirements

Prot'eg'e

  • African American, Hispanic, or Native American freshman and first year transfer students enrolled in STEM majors and the VA-NC LSAMP Program
  • One semester commitment (with the option to continue)
  • Attend "meet and greet" session
    Maintain continuous communication with mentor
    • Communicate weekly (via phone, email, face-to-face, etc.)
    • Meet face to face each month (minimum of 1 per month)
    • Attend OMSA events (minimum of 1 per semester)
    • Attend VA- NC LSAMP program events (minimum of 1 per semester)
  • Attend year-end closing program

Mentor

  • Incentive is $50 toward student account.
  • African American, Hispanic, or Native American juniors or seniors enrolled in STEM majors
  • GPA Requirement of 2.7 or higher
  • Attend one mentor training session
  • One semester commitment (with the option to continue)
  • Attend "meet and greet" session
  • Maintain continuous communication with prot'eg'e
    • Communicate weekly (via phone, email, face-to-face, etc.)
    • Meet face to face each month (minimum of 1 month)
    • Attend OMSA events (minimum of 1 per semester)
    • Attend VA-NC LSAMP program events (minimum of 1 per semester)
  • Attend year-end closing program

Become involved

For more information, contact:

Alfred Herrera
Program Coordinator
Virginia Commonwealth University, Monroe Park Campus,
601 West Main Street, Room 316
P.O. Box 843068,
Richmond, Virginia, 23284-3068
(804) 827-7000 ext. 314
herreraaj@vcu.edu

Mission

The primary mission of OMSA is to assist traditionally underserved and/or underrepresented student populations (i.e. race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender) through advising, support, program development, retention, mentoring and by promoting an appreciation of diversity throughout the campus community.


Our Staff

Yolanda Avent
Director
ylavent@vcu.edu

Faith Wilkerson
Assistant Director
fawilker@vcu,edu

Jenaé Harrington
Program Specialist
jdharrington@vcu.edu

Lorin Hoisington
Graduate Assistant
LGBT & Women's Services
hoisingtonle@vcu.edu

Andrea Chahin
Graduate Assistant
chahinas@vcu,edu

Davon Artis
Graduate Assistant
artisdt@vcu.edu