calendar Add meeting dates to your calendar.


Paper No. 2
Presentation Time: 1:55 PM


MAYGARDEN, Diane F., Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New Orleans, GP 1065, 2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, LA 70148, EGGER, Heather L., College of Education, University of New Orleans, CERM Bldg. Room 339, 2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, 70148 and GILL, Ivan P., College of Education, University of New Orleans, Department of Curriculum and Instiruction, Education Bldg, 2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, 70148,

For 36 years the University of New Orleans Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences (UNO EES) (formerly the Department of Geology and Geophysics) has offered summer out-of-state geosciences field trips for minority high school students. Initiated by Dr. Louis Fernandez in 1974 as a minority recruiting tool, and funded by a grant from NSF, the program has since thrived on funding from a variety of sponsors. The program was later expanded to include scholarship funding and mentoring, and other support for minority students at UNO-EES. Over the years the program has evolved and changed with the times and people involved, but retained its underlying goal of providing motivating science field based experiences for outstanding minority high school students of the Greater New Orleans area.

This paper will focus on the recent years of the program and the changes it has experienced during that time, including recovery from Hurricane Katrina and the beginning of an exciting partnership with University of Texas, El Paso (UTEP), San Francisco State University (SFSU) and Purdue University in the form of the NSF funded Minority Education Through Traveling and Learning in the Sciences (METALS) program.

The long-term goals of the program include increasing participation by minorities and underrepresented groups in the field of geosciences. The specific goals include providing field experiences, primarily in the western states for minority high school students with the aim of opening their minds to a career in earth sciences. We put our energy into three important components of the program: recruitment, program design and field trip coordination, and long term follow-up with the students.

Our charge as leaders of this program is to pass on our excitement for exploring the natural world through science to students who may have never had any outdoor experience or a chance to study earth science in school since a junior high class. After igniting the flame our challenge is to keep the students interested and help them overcome the many obstacles to entering and succeeding in a college program and choosing a career in the sciences that most suites their strengths. We continually re-evaluate our methods to find the most effective ways to reach the students.

Meeting Home page GSA Home Page