UMES Receives Award for
The Commerce Department's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has targeted $2.5 million to the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Princess Ann, as the lead institution in establishing a Living Marine Cooperative Science Center. The award is part of NOAA's new Educational Partnership Program with Minority Serving Institutions (EPP/MSI). The new initiative will award approximately $15 million in FY2001 funds for programs aimed at atmospheric, environmental and oceanic sciences and remote sensing research and educational programs.
Living Marine Cooperative Science Center
The new Living Marine Cooperative Science Center at UMES will work with partner MSIs to conduct ecological research on marine and estuarine systems while promoting education, research and advancement opportunities in marine science for students in traditionally under-represented groups.
"This new education initiative is a special partnership effort between NOAA and several academic institutions to expand education, research and professional opportunities in NOAA-related sciences," said Commerce Secretary Don Evans.
"This center, by itself, is important to University of Maryland, Eastern Shore. We are also going beyond, with the construction of the $3 million Coastal Ecology Teaching/Research Laboratory, which will be completed in early 2003. These two events will place University of Maryland, Eastern Shore in a unique position to provide significant opportunities to minority students for pursuing careers in the marine sciences," said Dr. Jackie Thomas, interim president of University of Maryland, Eastern Shore.
NOAA's EPP/MSI initiative is designed to support the development of quality education for students at minority serving institutions while meeting the prescribed goals of NOAA and the nation.
While four Cooperative Science Centers are designated, a total of 17 MSIs will be funded and participate as partners at these centers. Cooperative Science Center partners, located in New York City, Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Mississippi and Puerto Rico, focus on remote sensing, environmental sciences, atmospheric sciences and living marine resources.
The EPP/MSI initiative also calls for the development of an Environmental Entrepreneurship Program, an Undergraduate Scholarship Program and a Graduate Sciences Program for students attending MSIs in NOAA-related sciences.
The Environmental Entrepreneurship Program provides funds through a competitive process to support education and training to strengthen the capacity of MSIs. Thirteen grants are awarded annually to MSIs that support program development and environmental restoration activities with the aim of increasing the entry of individuals from under-represented groups into environmental fields.
The Undergraduate Science Program offers students a 10-week paid internship program with NOAA and provides scholarships during the academic year. Students who continue training during the academic year in a NOAA-related field and maintain an acceptable GPA will be offered an opportunity for a second 10-week internship at a NOAA field site the following summer.
The Graduate Sciences Program provides financial assistance to six MSI students for graduate-level training in NOAA-related occupations. Students accepted in this program are hired as NOAA employees and commit to a tenure of service with the agency. For more information on NOAA's Educational Partnership Program with Minority Serving Institutions, visit www.ofa.noaa.gov/~sbd/EPPS1.htm or contact the program manager at (301) 713-9437.