Event Title

SEEDS: Strengthening Education and Employment for Diverse Students

Location

Green and Gold Room

Event Website

http://uenr.warnercnr.colostate.edu/

Start Date

23-3-2012 10:10 AM

End Date

23-3-2012 10:50 AM

Description

For years, the College of Forestry at Oregon State University has viewed its role in helping diversify the profession of forestry primarily as a recruiting challenge. After several modestly successful efforts over the past decade, we have modified our approach to focus more on improving the success of under-represented students who find their way to us on their own. With financial help from the BLM and the federal ARRA program, we now have a program that seeks to enhance the academic and professional success of students through: paid mentored work experiences (both within and outside the university), a web-based program of virtual mentors, a more effective social support network within the college and university, and improved academic support. We still work on recruitment, but this remains our largest challenge in this arena. In only two years, we have seen great benefits from this program. Several examples include: a) a meaningful increase in under-represented students considering (and entering) graduate school, b) a large number of under-represented students in paid mentor-protégé relationships (rather than working in coffee shops and grocery stores), c) under-represented students moving into the professional workforce, d) improved academic performance, especially in younger students, and e) enhanced understanding of career opportunities for all. This is still a work in progress. We need to continue to improve recruitment and academic support, and build academic opportunities beyond mentored work experiences. And we need to find financial support beyond the next academic year. But regardless of that, we’re pleased with the results to date and think we’re having an impact on student lives.

Comments

Citation: Jensen, EC, Zahler, DA. 2012. SEEDS: Strengthening Education and Employment for Diverse Students. UENR 9th Biennial Conference. http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cuenr/9thBiennial/Plenary/2/

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Mar 23rd, 10:10 AM Mar 23rd, 10:50 AM

SEEDS: Strengthening Education and Employment for Diverse Students

Green and Gold Room

For years, the College of Forestry at Oregon State University has viewed its role in helping diversify the profession of forestry primarily as a recruiting challenge. After several modestly successful efforts over the past decade, we have modified our approach to focus more on improving the success of under-represented students who find their way to us on their own. With financial help from the BLM and the federal ARRA program, we now have a program that seeks to enhance the academic and professional success of students through: paid mentored work experiences (both within and outside the university), a web-based program of virtual mentors, a more effective social support network within the college and university, and improved academic support. We still work on recruitment, but this remains our largest challenge in this arena. In only two years, we have seen great benefits from this program. Several examples include: a) a meaningful increase in under-represented students considering (and entering) graduate school, b) a large number of under-represented students in paid mentor-protégé relationships (rather than working in coffee shops and grocery stores), c) under-represented students moving into the professional workforce, d) improved academic performance, especially in younger students, and e) enhanced understanding of career opportunities for all. This is still a work in progress. We need to continue to improve recruitment and academic support, and build academic opportunities beyond mentored work experiences. And we need to find financial support beyond the next academic year. But regardless of that, we’re pleased with the results to date and think we’re having an impact on student lives.

http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cuenr/9thBiennial/Plenary/2