Connecting students in STEM

Tufts University’s Center for STEM Diversity recently hosted the Northeast Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Symposium.
Group photo of the NE-LSAMP participants
Participants of the NE-LSAMP Symposium hosted at Tufts University on February 7, 2020.

This February, members of the Northeast Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (NE-LSAMP) gathered at Tufts University to share ideas that strengthen the preparation, representation, and success of underrepresented students in STEM disciplines.

Organized by Tufts University’s Center for STEM Diversity, the symposium empowered students and leaders from Northeastern University, the University of Rhode Island, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, University of Massachusetts Amherst, University of Connecticut, and Tufts University to network and learn about each other’s research.

The symposium began with welcoming remarks from Tufts School of Engineering Dean and Karol Family Professor Jianmin Qu and Charles Watson, Assistant Director of Diversity for the University of Rhode Island’s College of Engineering and Regional Chairperson of the National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates (NAMEPA).

A panel of students then discussed their path to graduate school. The students talked about their experiences as researchers in STEM and answered questions from prospective graduate students. The panel was followed by a poster session that featured a wide range of research projects completed by NE-LSAMP undergraduate and graduate students.

Valencia Koomson, Associate Professor in the Tufts University Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, was this year’s keynote speaker. In her address, she shared the advantages of seeking out mentors and the importance of doing research abroad.

The symposium concluded with networking activities that enabled students to learn more about each other and the NE-LSAMP universities.

“Our hope is that these scholars continue their educational journeys after college and use their time in LSAMP as a stepping stone toward further graduate and professional excellence,” said Campbell Halligan, Program Administrator of the Center for STEM Diversity.

Courtney Russo, Program Administrator of the Center for STEM Diversity, agreed, “the symposium was a great way for students with similar interests to meet each other and talk about their work.”

The Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP) is an NSF-funded national program that assists universities and colleges in their efforts to significantly increase the number of underrepresented students matriculating into and successfully completing high quality degree programs in STEM disciplines.

The Center for STEM Diversity (CSD) joined NE-LSAMP in 2017. The CSD works in partnership with the School of Engineering and the School of Arts and Sciences to foster a diverse and inclusive science and engineering learning environment at Tufts. To learn more about the Center for STEM Diversity, visit the CSD’s website and Facebook page.