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University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943


UCM Part of Alliance to Jointly Receive $5 million Grant for STEM Minority Participation

Contact: Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (Oct. 18, 2016) – The University of Central Missouri is one of eight Missouri institutions of higher education to jointly receive a $5 million grant from the National Science Foundation’s  Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP) program.

The announcement about the award was made last week by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon who joined higher education leaders for a press conference at Harris-Stowe State University in St. Louis. He called the grant a major achievement for students across the state. He noted that “by increasing the diversity of students completing their degrees, entering graduate programs, working in research laboratories and mentoring the next generation of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) students, Harris Stowe and the Missouri Alliance will build a foundation for increased diversity in STEM education across the nation.”

Called MoLSAMP, the consortium includes two historically black Missouri colleges: Harris-Stowe State University and Lincoln University in Jefferson City. UCM is part of the alliance, representing a state regional comprehensive university. Also involved are three research institutions: the University of Missouri-Columbia, University of Missouri-St. Louis, Washington University in St. Louis; a highly selective liberal arts institution, Truman State University; and the Center for Plant and Life Sciences at an urban institution of higher education, St. Louis Community College.

According to the governor’s office, the LSAMP program provides funding to alliances that implement comprehensive, evidence-based, innovative, and sustained strategies that ultimately result in the graduation of well-prepared, highly-qualified students from underrepresented groups who pursue graduate studies or careers in STEM areas.

LSAMP is named for Ohio Congressman Louis Stokes, who retired from Congress in 1999. He passed away in 2015, and was known for helping to focus federal attention on the nation’s poor and underserved communities.

MoLSAMP, which is the nation’s 46th  LSAMP alliance, has set a goal to double the number of Missouri’s underrepresented minority STEM graduates by 2021. In 2014, there were 283 underrepresented minority STEM graduates in the state. The alliance plans to more than double that number to exceed 630 within five years. LSAMP identifies underrepresented minorities as African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and Native Pacific Islanders.

“The University of Central Missouri is proud to be affiliated with MoLSAMP,” said UCM President Charles Ambrose. “We recognize that its goals are in the best interest of our participating institutions, the students we serve, and the future of this state.

 “We have a tremendous need in Missouri for graduates who are prepared to work in STEM-related fields, and this alliance will help us ensure a much more diverse population of graduates who are ready for the jobs of the future. That’s a winning proposition for everyone involved,” Ambrose added.

The MoLSAMP alliance was formed during the fall of 2014 following unrest in Ferguson, Mo. Higher Education leaders, including provosts and presidents, gathered to find educational solutions to address a gap in the enrollment, retention and graduation rates of Missouri underrepresented students.