NEAR WEST SIDE — University of Illinois at Chicago academics say they hope a new program at the school will encourage more minority students to pursue degrees in health and science, fields where they have historically been under-represented, according to UIC.
Beginning in spring, the school will use a $1.4 million, five-year federal grant to collaborate with students from City Colleges of Chicago in an effort to get more minority students trained in nursing, public health and liberal arts and sciences.
The program will recruit a total of 58 students, 18 in the first year, with an additional 10 students per year in the following four years. Students will receive hourly pay for their work in labs with the faculty for the duration of the program, which would be from the summer of their freshmen year through their sophomore year at the City Colleges.
Students in the program will have access to an intensive summer research skills workshop, a research mentor and peer-tutoring options, in addition to participating in a health science convention.
“This program will enhance the students’ basic research skills, such as quantitative and qualitative analysis, critical thinking and innovation,” said UIC Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares.
The new program also complements UIC’s role as director of the Illinois State Board of Education’s Health Science Learning Exchange, started in 2012 as part of a just over $10 million initiative to better prepare Illinois students for careers in science, technology, engineering and math fields.