Realizing the PROMISE of Success for Latinx STEM Students


Research findings in this policy and practice brief result from a National Science Foundation funded conference grant (NSF Award 1759134) awarded to Laredo Community College, Texas A&M University International and a collaborative of Texas Hispanic-Serving Institutions.  

NSF Grant Principal Investigator: Nora R. Garza, Ph.D., Laredo College

Co-Principal Investigators: Agnes Flores, Ed.D., Texas A&M University-Kingsville Selina V Mireles, Ph.D., University of Texas-Permian Basin Rohitha Goonatilake, Ph.D., Texas A&M International University

The PROMISE© (Providing Resources and Opportunities for Minorities in STEM Education) conference, held in Laredo, TX on March 22-23, 2018, provided an opportunity for participants to outline key student and institutional challenges and opportunities to improve STEM education for Latinx students. 

This policy and practice brief reports the significant findings of a mixed-methods research study.

Findings were derived from: 1) a survey administered to PROMISE© conference participants and 2) focus group research with 150 educators from two- and four-year institutions attending the Conference. 

This brief is useful if you are seeking to better understand key issues related to improving success for Latinx STEM students including:

  1. STEM student and institutional challenges and opportunities, 

  2. Factors and experiences that enhance or preclude STEM achievement

  3. Recommendations to foster student success.

The survey research findings highlight perceived challenges that could preclude the success of Latinx STEM students, as well as opportunities that could assist students to succeed. Focus group findings detail: 1) challenges faced by Latinx students, 2) challenges faculty faced working with Latinx students, 3) who or what was making a difference, 4) student and community cultural strengths, 5) important skills and competencies needed to succeed in STEM, 6) high-impact STEM practices, and 7) discriminatory practices that can preclude Latinx STEM success. Study conclusions and recommendations are offered as the role of NSF and other funding agencies remain important.

Keywords: HSI, Hispanic, Hispanic Serving Institution, Policy, Texas, HSI community, Latinx, Latino, STEM Education, Providing Resources and Opportunities for Minorities in STEM Education

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