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Title: Native American engineering faculty: Insights into entry and persistence
Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education initiatives in higher education increasingly call for career mentorship opportunities for underrepresented minorities (URM). Researchers (Johnson & Sheppard, 2004; Nelson & Brammer, 2010) note the importance of having faculty to mentor and act as role models for students, often assuming that mentors play a stronger role if they are also from the same cultural background. Native American (NA) faculty members are underrepresented in most fields in colleges and universities, and exceedingly so in engineering. Only 0.2% (N=68) of engineering faculty nationwide identify as Native American (Yoder, 2014). Likewise, NA students are underrepresented in undergraduate (0.6%; N=1853) and graduate (0.1%; N=173) engineering programs. The low percentage in graduate school is of even greater concern as they represent the primary potential pool of new faculty members. Advising and mentorship from those who identify as NA are often considered important components recruiting and retention in STEM fields. For example, Smith and colleagues (2014) found that factors such as communal goal orientation influenced NA engineering students’ motivation and academic performance. However, very few studies account for differences in NA identity or provide a nuanced account of successful NA STEM professional experiences (Page-Reeves et al., 2018). This research paper presents findings from an exploratory study aimed at pinpointing the factors that influence NA entry and persistence in engineering faculty positions.  more » « less
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Keeping Our Faculty VIII: Recruiting, Retaining, Advancing American Indian Faculty and Faculty of Color
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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