The National Science Foundation (NSF) recently awarded The University of New Mexico-Valencia Campus a grant of $1 million to provide STEM scholarships for students.

The Scholarships for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S-STEM) grant will be dispersed over the next five years to provide at least 15 scholarships a year for students who have financial need and are majoring in science, mathematics, engineering or information technology at the branch campus.

“I am pleased that UNM-Valencia has been awarded the NSF Scholarship grant. I know many students will be able to take advantage of these funds to further their education,” said Miriam Chávez, Ph.D., and Regents’ Professor of Biology at UNM-Valencia.

To receive the scholarship, students must be enrolled full time at UNM-Valencia and demonstrate financial need as verified through filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

The scholarship award will be based on the unmet need of their financial aid award. Recruitment for potential students recently began at the beginning of the spring semester—with the first grantee-cohort starting in fall 2017.

Miriam Chavez
Regents’ Professor Miriam Chavez

Due to the need for well-qualified workers in STEM fields and manufacturing industries in Central New Mexico, this project is designed to prepare students for future employment, thus having a significant economic impact on the region with a qualified workforce for employers to utilize and grow their companies. The scholarships also support the financial base of the families of students who receive the money to help pay for school. 

“This is a great opportunity for students and residents of Valencia County to enhance their STEM skills as they prepare for 21st Century jobs,” said Chávez.

According to the grant, since UNM-Valencia is a two-year college, a Minority Serving Institution (MSI) and a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI), it is anticipated that the lessons learned from a comprehensive evaluation and research study will provide information regarding the improvement of retention, graduation and transfer rates for a diverse group of low-income STEM students that can be broadly disseminated.

Students attaining an Associate of Applied Science degree will be able to find employment or transfer to four-year degree programs in technical management or computer science.

For more information about UNM-Valencia Campus visit their website or call 505.925.8560.