Paper No. 11
Presentation Time: 4:15 PM
GDEP (GEOSCIENCE DIVERSITY ENHANCEMENT PROGRAM): CREATING A COMMUNITY-BASED SUMMER GEOSCIENCE RESEARCH PROGRAM
The Geoscience Diversity Enhancement Program (GDEP), initiated in fall 1999, is a 3-year NSF-funded effort to increase the diversity of undergraduates studying geoscience disciplines in the greater Long Beach area. California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) defines geosciences as studies in the geologic, physical geographic, archeologic and environmental science disciplines. GDEP represents a collaboration among four CSULB departments (geological sciences, geography, anthropology, and psychology), five community colleges, and the Long Beach Unified School District This comprehensive program is designed to foster geoscience research, strengthen exposure to the geosciences in secondary schools and community colleges, and graduate an increasing number of students from underrepresented groups who major in the geosciences. The cornerstone of the project is an intensive summer research experience. This year, four high school faculty, five community college faculty, nine CSULB faculty, eight undergraduates, and eight graduate students are working together on a variety of projects. The GDEP website includes abundant information about the projects (http://www.csulb.edu/geography/gdep). Some of the initial achievements of this project include: 1) assembling a community of interested geoscience researchers by outreach to non-CSULB campuses; 2) collection of pre-program data on student attitudes towards geoscience education and careers; 3) design and implementation of summer research programs to mentor potential geoscience majors; and 4) educating new students in research-related skills through on-campuses workshops and training seminars. We will present results from our first summer of research activities and a preliminary analysis of how GDEP participation has affected student attitudes towards the geosciences.