Graduate student Erin Cech is part of a research team which has just won a major NSF grant. The grant is called “Supportive Communities: How Gender Impacts the Native American Experience in STEM Fields,” co-funded by NSF’s Gender in Science and Engineering and EPSCoR Directorates ($215,000).(PI: Anneke Metz, Chemistry, Montana State University).
This multi-methods study will investigate how Native American men and women differentially negotiate cultural expectations as well as social support structures to persist in STEM (Science Technology, Engineering and Math) disciplines. We will follow 240 Native American men and women in STEM majors at 2 institutions, Montana State University and Northern Arizona University, and perform in-depth interviews with 60 of these students. We will examine the differential impact across gender of social support structures, informal academic support structures, and formal academic support program and of the persistence of these students in STEM.
Erin Cech’s role as Senior Personnel will be to help direct the collection and transcribing of the qualitative data by grad students at MSU and taking the lead on the qualitative analysis once the data are all collected. Bravo Erin!