Genesee Community College Awarded Prestigious National Science Foundation Grant for Student Scholarships

Genesee Community College was awarded a National Science Foundation Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics Scholarship grant (NSF-CSEMS). This award provides $268,000 for a four-year "Technology Opportunity Pathway" (TOP) program. TOP will provide college scholarships and academic financial assistance to Genesee students enrolled full time and seeking degrees in Genesee's three computer science programs, engineering, drafting, multimedia, or mathematics programs. The TOP grant is the largest award Genesee Community College has received from the National Science Foundation, and the first to be dedicated toward educational scholarships.

"The opportunity to offer TOP scholarships to full-time students who are enrolled in math, drafting, multimedia, engineering, and computer technology programs is significant to Genesee's philosophy to be an innovative leader in advanced technology," Dr. Claudia Moore, Genesee's Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs said. "TOP scholarships will promote the intellectual, social, and economic growth of our community."

Kenneth J. Mead, Mathematics and Computer Information Systems (CIS) professor at Genesee Community College is the principal investigator for the NSF TOP proposal. He will manage the TOP program with a team of staff and faculty to support this new initiative. The team has four co-investigators, representing different areas of the College; Dr. Virginia Taylor, Dean of Enrollment Management; James M. Bucki, Sr., Director of Academic Computer Technology Programs, and Marina Cappellino, Associate Professor of Information and Multimedia Technology, and Philip Pickering, Associate Professor of Mathematics and CIS.

In addition to financial aid to cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and educational supplies and materials, the proposal to NSF includes an important mentoring and advising component for TOP students. Among the different support opportunities will be job shadowing, visits to four-year colleges and universities, and attending various Genesee workshops.

"TOP provides more than just financial assistance," Mead said. "An integral part of the program will be faculty and student services staff serving as mentors to the TOP scholars throughout their experience here at Genesee. We seek to increase the participation of women and minorities in the TOP programs at the college, and we will require participation in activities and workshops specifically designed to improve each individual's chance of success in the program. Another part of our strategy involves developing a group of peer mentors from the second year TOP scholars to encourage the freshman participants in the program."

Students interested in applying for a TOP Scholarship, which is officially known as the NSF Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics Scholarship (NSF CSEMS), should contact the Admissions office at Genesee Community College by calling 585-345-6800 or toll free 1-866-CALL-GCC. Eligibility criteria include: (1) being a registered full-time Genesee student in a declared degree in one of the following associate degree programs: Mathematics, Engineering, Drafting, Computer Information Systems, Computer Systems and Network Technologies, Information Technology, and Multimedia; (2) a demonstration of academic potential or ability; and (3) financial need as defined by Federal financial aid guidelines.

Genesee Community College's Open House scheduled for Thursday, November 11, 2004, starting promptly at 9:00 AM, offers the perfect opportunity to learn all the details about the TOP Scholarship, meet the faculty, and obtain an application for the Spring or Fall 2005 semester. Additionally, parents and students will have the opportunity to tour the technology labs and overall campus, visit College Village, and speak with other students. Further information is also available at the College's website: www.genesee.edu.

While this is the largest NSF grant awarded to Genesee, the College received three prior grants, as follows:

  • In 1994, Professor Kenneth Mead was the PI for a NSF grant to Genesee Community College for $16,900. The proposal helped fund the installation of network infrastructure to connect the campus centers to the SUNY network.
  • In 1976, Genesee was awarded $10,300 for a comprehensive science education program.
  • In 1975, Genesee was awarded $18,800 for a science program at Attica Correctional Facility.

    The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent agency of the U.S. Government, established by the National Science Foundation Act of 1950. The mission of NSF is to promote the progress of science; advance national health, prosperity, and welfare; and to secure national defense. The proposal from Genesee Community College was among roughly 30,000 new or renewal proposals received annually by NSF, and the Foundation makes approximately 9,000 new awards each year. For further information on the National Science Foundation go to: http://www.nsf.gov/

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