Meet the spring SCC, WNCC STEM CONNECT Scholars

Profiles of the spring Southeast Community College and Western Nebraska Community College Scholars are now online. Learn more about the instructors who inspired them to pursue STEM, including their STEM CONNECT mentors Bill Spurgeon and Scott Schaub at WNCC and Sandeep Holay and Misty Wehling at SCC. These STEM CONNECT Scholars are excited to meet and build a community with the UNL Scholars.

This funding from NSF’s S-STEM initiative provides scholarships and academic support for low-income students, specifically targeting underrepresented minorities, women, and rural and first-generation students. Students who begin at a community college in the academic-transfer program will take courses to build their strengths in math and computer science, while the students who begin at Nebraska will major in math, computer science, computer engineering, or software engineering.

Financial need and scholarship amounts are determined by the FAFSA, and scholarships can be as much as $8,000 per year. They are renewable for four years at Nebraska, or two years at SCC or WNCC, and then funds will follow students for two more years if they transfer to Nebraska.

The program boasts a large interdisciplinary team of researchers, advisers, and administrators from all three institutions, including SCC and WNCC principal investigators Holay and Spurgeon, as well as SCC’s Dean of Arts and Sciences Carolee Ritter and WNCC physics instructor Schaub.

Jim Lewis, Aaron Douglas Professor of mathematics and STEM CONNECT’s principal investigator, leads a team at UNL that includes Amy Goodburn, senior associate vice chancellor and dean of undergraduate education; Brittany Duncan, assistant professor in computer science and engineering; Petronela Radu, Olson Professor in mathematics; and Wendy Smith, research associate professor in the Center for Science, Mathematics, and Computer Education.

Feature articles:

SCC student Logan Wessel:

WNCC student Alan Ouderkirk: