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(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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Grant Helps CCC Aim Minority Students To STEM Fields
by press release

Flagstaff, AZ (Aug. 30, 2017) - Coconino Community College, in alliance with three other educational institutions, will be working to steer minority students into Science Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) careers.

According to information from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, the National Science Foundation awarded the university a five-year, $4.6 million Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) grant. The goal of the grant is to help increase the number of minority students going into STEM careers, a field which is disproportionately underrepresented with minorities.

With the grant, UNLV, in turn, will fund a project called the Southern Nevada Northern Arizona LSAMP, which is an alliance of UNLV, Northern Arizona University, College of Southern Nevada and CCC.

Dr. Gonzalo Perez, CCC's Associate Vice President of Innovative Learning Solutions, said that CCC's portion of the grant will be $50,000 a year over the next five years, or $250,000 for the life of the grant. The funding will help fulfill the objective of recruiting 80 underrepresented minority students per year into STEM fields. CCC will hold information sessions regarding the benefits of a STEM career as well as work in conjunction with Dual Enrollment to identify high school students for recruitment into the program upon graduation.

"Once the students are recruited, we will provide a menu of support resources and motivational STEM activities to ensure retention and completion of their STEM program," Dr. Perez said. "Furthermore, NAU students will support our students as peer mentors to help CCC students bridge the gap from the community college into a STEM baccalaureate program."

CCC President Dr. Colleen A. Smith, PhD, said, "Jeff Jones, Dean of Learning, was instrumental in helping CCC participate in the alliance and receive the grant. Dr. Perez is now taking the lead with his considerable experience with grants and encouraging minority students to consider STEM careers."

CCC has hired a full-time coordinator to work on the program.

For more information about CCC, visit

About Coconino Community College

Coconino Community College faculty and staff are dedicated to promoting an environment of excellence to support students. Since 1991, CCC has served residents across 18,000 square miles of Coconino County. The College has helped create the region's skilled workforce, with the goal of improving the lives of our residents through workforce development and higher education. CCC has served more than 75,000 students countywide, with two campuses in Flagstaff and an instructional site in Page.

CCC provides affordable tuition and a variety of certificates and degrees including career/technical programs with more than 50 certificate programs and two-year associate degrees in various fields. Those fields include nursing, fire science, law enforcement and business. Additionally, CCC has programs that ease student transition to any of the three state universities.

CCC reaches out to the more rural portions of the County including Williams, the Grand Canyon/Tusayan, Page/Lake Powell, Fredonia, Tuba City and other remote areas on the Navajo, Hopi and Supai Tribal Lands. Instructional sites offer classes through online, in-person and Interactive Television classes to meet the needs of students in these rural and remote areas. Nearly 20 percent of CCC's students are Native American learners.
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