The University of Massachusetts is dedicated to increasing levels of diversity, equity, and inclusion within the world of STEM. In this pursuit, the department of geosciences in the College of Natural Sciences led a successful application to join the American Geophysical Union (AGU) Bridge Program, which helps universities recruit and retain women and underrepresented minorities in STEM graduate programs.
UMass is one of just thirteen participating institutions in the competitive AGU Bridge Program, which is a part of the Inclusive Graduate Education Network (IGEN). The university’s successful application was largely due to previous efforts to diversify the geosciences department, including the large role its graduate students played in starting the Campus's Bridge Scholars Program (no connection to AGU).
Partners of the AGU Bridge Program are given access to their bachelor and master’s student applicant database, which can be used to identify and recruit qualified students from underrepresented groups who are interested in pursuing graduate studies in geosciences. The department hopes that its participation in this national program will promote increased STEM participation and highlight women and minorities who are positively impacted by science. As a result of the university’s membership in AGU Bridge, the geosciences department was able to recruit two new graduate students from the program into their department this fall. The College of Natural Sciences will partially fund an assistantship for one of the students.
Additional information about the AGU Bridge Program, including how to apply to the program, can be found on their website.