GSA Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado, USA - 2016

Paper No. 133-4
Presentation Time: 2:20 PM


TVELIA, Sean, Earth & Space Science, Suffolk County Community College, Physical Sciences Department, 533 College Road, Selden, NY 11784-2899,

With over 25,000 enrolled students, SCCC is the largest community college in New York State. Despite this large student population, like other institutions across the nation, SCCC geoscience programs struggle to attract and retain new majors despite a growing demand in the regional workforce. Additionally, extracurricular activities designed to increase student knowledge base and/or skill sets are under utilized due to the need to maintain outside employment to meet Long Island’s high cost of living.

The goals of this Geopaths Extra program are to 1) increase diversity and participation within geoscience programs, 2) increase student success and retention in geoscience courses, and 3) provide pathways to four-year institutions and regional career opportunities. To accomplish these goals GEOCORE will bring together three regional high schools, SCCC, Stony Brook University Department of Geosciences and School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Geological Survey Water Resources Discipline, and private industry partners to provide career awareness and research-based extracurricular activities that highlight contemporary issues facing our region while also providing geoscience skills training.

In addition to providing students with the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful in the local geoscience workforce, programs developed with the local four-year institution will provide a connection between community college geoscience students and their peers at the university to ease the stress of transfer and provide encouragement to continuing students.

Finally, in order to increase success and retention in geoscience classes, this program will establish a group of nine GEO CORE student ambassadors. These second-year geoscience majors will receive advanced training and also serve as peer mentors within geoscience programs and as tutors in intro level courses.