Texas A&M System’s LSAMP program renewed for another five years

The Texas A&M University System Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (TAMUS LSAMP) program has received funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for another five years. TAMUS LSAMP is a partnership between Texas A&M University, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and Prairie View A&M University (PVAMU) focused on increasing the number of underrepresented students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.  

With the grant renewal, TAMUS LSAMP will continue its work to increase STEM enrollment and Bachelor of Science graduation rates, and also to prepare qualified candidates for graduate school. “We are happy to have the opportunity to continue partnering with our Alliance campuses and college partners at Texas A&M,” said Dr. Karen Butler-Purry, associate provost for graduate studies and project co-principal investigator. “We look forward to continued efforts to support underrepresented minority students in obtaining degrees in the STEM fields.”

The program is open to STEM students from underrepresented minority (URM) groups currently enrolled at any of the three partner institutions. LSAMP students are involved in academic, professional and leadership development activities including participation in cohort-based learning communities and faculty and peer mentoring.

At Texas A&M, LSAMP partners with four STEM colleges, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the Dwight Look College of Engineering, the College of Geosciences and the College of Science, to (1) institutionalize successful recruitment and retention efforts for URM STEM majors; (2) sustain STEM student transfer through continued and new relationships with community colleges and the three Alliance campuses; (3) increase participation in STEM undergraduate research, including international experiences, to stimulate interest and enrollment in graduate programs and create a model program that increases the number of globally competitive URM STEM graduates; and (4) link and leverage other NSF projects at Alliance partner institutions, especially those involving veterans as STEM students, for synergy and to disseminate findings.

TAMUS LSAMP was one of the first six LSAMP programs to receive funding in 1992. The project has been continuously funded since. The Bridge to the Doctorate (BTD) component of the program has provided more than $9 million in fellowship funding for the first two years of graduate studies for 120 Texas A&M and PVAMU engineering, science, agriculture and life sciences, and geosciences students. To date, 25 BTD Fellows have completed doctorates at Texas A&M or other institutions.

The principal investigator for TAMUS LSAMP is Dr. Karan Watson, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at Texas A&M. Co-principal investigators Purry and Dr. Shannon Walton, director of graduate and professional studies and director of TAMUS LSAMP, and Dr. Samuel Merriweather, associate director of TAMUS LSAMP, complete the leadership team at Texas A&M. Other co-principal investigators are Dr. Kendall Harris, professor and dean of the College of Engineering at PVAMU; and Dr. Frank Pezold, dean of the College of Science and Engineering at A&M-Corpus Christi.