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UMD, Fond du Lac to share minority grant money

Two Northland colleges are members of a statewide alliance of Minnesota colleges and universities that will share a $2.45 million grant to attract under-represented minorities to science and engineering programs.

Two Northland colleges are members of a statewide alliance of Minnesota colleges and universities that will share a $2.45 million grant to attract under-represented minorities to science and engineering programs.

The University of Minnesota Duluth and Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College, along with 14 other universities and colleges, will receive the money over five years from the National Science Foundation's Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation program. The University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, along with the Science Museum of Minnesota and the Minnesota High Tech Association, announced the grant Wednesday.

The alliance's primary goal is to double the number of baccalaureate degrees earned by minority groups that are historically under-represented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. These specifically include African-American, Hispanic/Latino American, and American Indian students.

Since the creation of the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation program, minority enrollment in science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs at more than 450 participating institutions in 37 states has increased from 35,670 in 1991 to more than 205,000 in 2003.

The Minnesota alliance will use the money to provide opportunities for peer-to-peer learning, undergraduate research, industry internships and professional development, and college preparation science and engineering courses.

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In addition to UMD, Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College, and the UM-Twin Cities (the alliance's lead organization), members of the North Star STEM Alliance are: University of Minnesota-Morris; Augsburg College; Carleton College; Gustavus Adolphus College; Macalester College; St. Olaf College; Metropolitan State University; Minnesota State University, Mankato; St. Cloud State University; Anoka-Ramsey Community College; Century College; Minneapolis Community and Technical College; North Hennepin Community College; Science Museum of Minnesota; and the Minnesota High Tech Association.

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