The Center for Excellence in Graduate Education (CEGE) at California State University (CSU), Stanislaus was recently notified that its federal funding will continue into a second year. The 5-year, $2.76 million U.S. Department of Education Title V Promoting Post-baccalaureate Opportunities for Hispanic Americans grant was initially awarded to the university in October 2010.
“This second year of funding is further acknowledgement that the university has demonstrated substantial progress toward the grant project’s primary goals and objectives,” said President Hamid Shirvani. “I am very pleased with the headway we made in the program’s first year.”
“Our goals are clear: to increase both the percentage of Hispanic and low-income students in graduate programs and the rate of graduate degree completion among these students,” said CEGE Director Shawna Young, who also serves as Core Faculty of the Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership and Professor of Kinesiology at CSU Stanislaus.
Specifically, the objectives of the grant project are to:
– Increase CSU Stanislaus graduate degree completion by Hispanic and low-income students by 20 percent over the grant period and sustain graduate degree completion beyond the funding term.
– Increase the percentage of Hispanic and low-income students enrolled in CSU Stanislaus graduate programs by 15 percent over the grant period and sustain these graduate degree enrollment levels beyond the funding term.
To accomplish these objectives, the university established the Center for Excellence in Graduate Education (CEGE) to focus on three primary project components:
Component One relates to providing enhanced support for graduate students. Examples of programs available to students include graduate assistantships which provide the opportunity for students to work with faculty as research and/or teaching assistants, and the Graduate Writing Residency Program, an intensive writing program designed to support students in the thesis or dissertation writing process.
Component Two focuses on improving assessment and data-tracking systems. “Working closely with the university’s Office of Institutional Research here at CSU Stanislaus, we are able to improve the graduate education assessment plan and to increase the precision by which we track and monitor the retention and graduation of graduate students,” states Dr. Oddmund Myhre, Core Faculty in the Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership and Professor of Educational Technology.
Component Three involves collaboration between the CEGE and the Office of Service Learning at CSU Stanislaus. Community-based curricula and research projects provide CSU Stanislaus graduate students with opportunities to gain real-world experience while serving their community. Examples include a partnership with Wellness Works in which CSU Stanislaus nursing students offer health-screening clinics to provide care to individuals in low-income communities in Stockton, directed by Dr. Carolyn Martin, Associate Professor of Nursing. Another example is a community-based research program, coordinated by the CSU Stanislaus Center for Public Policy Studies, in which graduate students work with community agencies to conduct research on issues that are important to local residents.
For more information on the Center for Excellence in Graduate Education and its programs supported through Title V funds, please visit the Center’s website at www.csustan.edu/cege/.