Paper No. 1
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM
MS PHD'S: DIVERSIFYING THE EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE COMMUNITY THROUGH A SYNERGY OF MENTORING, COMMUNITY BUILDING, AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITIES
The Minorities Striving and Pursuing Higher Degrees of Success (MS PHD'S) in Earth System Science Professional Development Program was established by and for underrepresented minorities to facilitate increased and sustained participation within the Earth system science community. Modeled after Aristotle’s philosophy that the “whole is greater than the sum of its parts”, MS PHD’S practices a synergistic model of tiered mentoring practices, successful minority scientist role models, peer-to-peer community building activities, professional development training techniques, networking opportunities, and virtual communication tools to broaden the participation of underrepresented minorities (URM) within the ESS workforce. Through a three-phase structure of activities, URM students establish mentoring relationships with successful scientists, build meaningful ties with URM peers and future colleagues, strengthen oral and written communication skills, engage in networking opportunities within premier scientific venues, and maintain continuity of networks formed through program participation. Established in 2003, MS PHD’S is now in its ninth cohort. From the original cohort of 25 participants, the program has grown to support 213 participants. Of these 213 participants, 47 have obtained the doctorate and are employed within the ESS workforce. Another 67 are enrolled in doctoral programs. MS PHD’S maintains close ties with program alumni to further support retention, inclusivity, and broadening participation of URM students and graduates in STEM activities. The program reengages alumni to become mentors and leaders for each new cohort as well as facilitating valuable opportunities for alumni to advance in their ESS related academic and professional career pathways.