AMS DIVERSITY PROJECTS: ENHANCING GEOSCIENCE EDUCATION AT MINORITY-SERVING INSTITUTIONS
With additional support from NASA and in partnership with Second Nature, the organizing entity behind the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment, AMS offers the AMS Climate Studies Diversity Project with the goal of training 100 MSI faculty members to implement the course on their campuses. The Diversity Project begins with an expenses-paid 5-day course implementation workshop, which covers fundamental understandings within AMS Climate Studies and strategies for course offering. In the year following workshop attendance, faculty work within their MSI to implement the course. Participants are then invited to a second workshop at the AMS Annual Meeting to report back the results of their work. The Project has trained approximately 75 MSI faculty members, with the final course implementation workshop to be held in May 2015. The AMS Climate Studies Diversity Project follows the proven models of the AMS Weather Studies (2002-2007) and AMS Ocean Studies (2006-2008) Diversity Projects, which have impacted more than 200 MSI faculty members and 24,000 students.
AMS Climate Studies explores the fundamental science of Earth’s climate system while addressing the societal impacts relevant to today’s students. The course utilizes resources from respected organizations, such as the IPCC and U.S. Global Change Research Program, and emphasizes investigation of real-word and current NASA and NOAA data. The brand new climate studies etextbook, Our Changing Climate, was released in August 2014 with a greater focus on climate change issues as well as new chapters detailing human and ecosystem vulnerabilities, energy and geopolitical issues, and climate change denial.
As a whole, AMS undergraduate courses have exposed about 100,000 students to the geosciences, strengthening the pathway towards advanced study and careers.