Texas Tech University President Guy Bailey and several other researchers recently
received $978,000 from the National Science Foundation
The grant, titled the Integrated STEM Initiative on the South Plains (ISISP), will
provide help to administer the university’s burgeoning educational outreach programs
in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
These outreach programs seek to support educators in STEM disciplines and to prepare
more students for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Other investigators include Jaclyn Cañ
as, an assistant professor at The Institute of Environmental and Human Health; Jerry
Dwyer, an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics & Statistics; Juan
oz, vice president of institutional diversity, equity and community engagement; and
Lawrence Schovanec, interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Bailey said this grant will provide greater coordination among ongoing university
STEM programs so that faculty members who participate in these activities are linked
together as an outreach network. The five-year grant will involve hiring a dedicated
recruitment specialist and supporting a coordinator of outreach.
“If one considers the body of work and support for our related activities in science,
technology, engineering and mathematics, then one can see Texas Tech is establishing
itself as a national leader in the field,” Bailey said. “We believe our work with
STEM programs is required to keep Texas and the U.S. competitive in the future.”
In recent years, the NSF has approved eight STEM proposals from Texas Tech faculty
for about $13.5 million in total funding, said Lawrence Schovanec, interim dean of
the College of Arts and Sciences. Because of the wide range and number of programs,
researchers believed it was time to apply for this highly competitive administrative
“The goal for all Texas Tech’s STEM programs is to increase the number of students
– especially students from underrepresented groups – who are interested in studying
science, technology, engineering and mathematics,” Schovanec said. “Texas Tech is
really emerging as a national leader in STEM outreach programs, and these programs
are very much an institutional effort with many researchers involved across colleges
and disciplines. This grant provides an umbrella for administrative oversight and
coordination for institutions with multiple NSF-funded STEM programs.”
The grant comes from the NSF’s Innovation Through Institutional Integration Program.
Along with NSF-funded STEM initiatives, the university also has additional programs
funded by other agencies, such as a $1.5 million grant from the National Institutes
of Health for the Plains Bridges to the Baccalaureate program and $3 million from
the Greater Texas Foundation to fund a master’s program for middle school math and
The Texas Tech T-STEM Center, a separate entity housing three programs that have demonstrated
positive impact on K-12 STEM education, provides curriculum, professional development
and recruitment for teachers. The center, started in 2006, has nearly $2.2 million
Additional STEM programs are funded by agencies including the Texas Education Agency,
Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and Texas Workforce Commission.
CONTACT: Lawrence Schovanec, interim dean, College of Arts and Sciences,
(806) 742-3833, or firstname.lastname@example.org
, or Jerry Dwyer, assistant professor, Department of Mathematics;
(806) 742-2580 ext 230, or email@example.com.