STEM scholars help New Orleans freshmen gain a head start

Recent national statistics show that fewer than 40 percent of college students who want to study in the STEM field actually finish their degrees.
Recent national statistics show that fewer than 40 percent of college students who want to study in the STEM field actually finish their degrees. | File photo
Leaders of the STEM Scholars program at the University of New Orleans aim to provide a head start for incoming freshmen in science, technology, engineering and math this fall.

This is the second year of the STEM Scholars program, which lasts for five days. It helps incoming freshmen to work ahead for their college-level science and math courses while also learning the best methods for taking notes, studying, and more skills that are useful with college academia.

“You’re going to have to learn in a different way than you’ve been learning,” Jerry Howard, professor of biological sciences, told the students during their first discussion of learning strategies, said.

Recent national statistics show that fewer than 40 percent of college students who want to study in the STEM field actually finish their degrees. The STEM Scholars program seeks to reduce these numbers, helping students to adjust to college life.

Last spring, UNO gained a 2.5 percent higher retention of STEM students, especially those who attended the STEM Scholars summer program last year. The program’s organizers intend to continue gathering data throughout the next five years. With this information, they will be able to measure and analyze the ways that the program has helped students gain an immersive college preview experience. They hope that the program will help the students improve their scores as they study in their fields.

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University of New Orleans

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