Vaughn College has been awarded a $575,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to fund scholarship programs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Titled “Increasing Student Enrollment and Achievement in Engineering and Engineering Technology,” the grant provides $115,000 annually over the next five years. The total award represents the largest NSF grant ever given to Vaughn.

The grant will fund 25 four-year scholarships over the five-year period and will target talented, low-income, minority students who are enrolled in a bachelor of science degree program in mechatronics engineering, mechanical engineering technology or electronic engineering technology. Vaughn’s goal is to increase the number of recent high school graduates who successfully complete the College’s STEM degree programs.

To be eligible, students must:
• Be enrolled in a full-time bachelor degree’s program.
• Demonstrate financial need by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
• Have a minimum cumulative SAT (writing section not included) of 1050.
• Have a minimum high school cumulative Grade Point Average of 3.0.

Scholarship recipients will have comprehensive support services that include faculty mentors, academic advisors and supplemental instructors. Under the guidance of faculty mentors, scholarship recipients will participate in integrated research and educational activities that will strengthen their hands-on analytical and communication skills, ensuring successful degree completion while preparing them for successful engineering careers with learning outcomes that are aligned with industry standards.

Principal Investigators Drs. Hossein Rahemi and Paul LaVergne, chairs of the engineering and technology and arts and sciences departments, respectively, will oversee implementation.

“Students who are awarded these scholarships will have the opportunity to work one-on-one with a faculty mentor to explore their research interests,” Rahemi said. “The quality of these research relationships adds significantly to the depth of each recipient’s educational experience at Vaughn.”

Funds will also support other costs associated for scholarship recipients, including industry site visits and undergraduate research conferences such as the VEX Robotics Competition, Spuyten Duyvil Undergraduate Mathematics Conference, American Society for Engineering Education and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics.