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Mercy College Establishes Intensive STEM Teacher Initiative with $1.5 Million NSF Grant

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded nearly $1.5 million to Mercy College in New York. The college will use the grant to establish the Mercy College Intensive STEM Teacher Initiative (MISTI).

MISTI will be a five-year program to prepare and graduate 20 certified middle or high school math and biology teachers. The program is designed to recruit women and underrepresented minorities to pursue STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) teaching careers. The NSF funds will be used primarily to fund the students' educational costs. MISTI participants will start the program as biology or math majors and finish with a master's degree in adolescence education and a New York State teaching certificate.

Activities in the MISTI program will include:

  • STEM Summer Immersion Camps at the end of the students' freshmen and sophomore years;
  • An introduction to teaching for junior and senior students;
  • Peer teaching;
  • Pedagogical seminars;
  • Workshop development;
  • Presentations at the Mercy College Parent Center in the Bronx; and
  • A full final-year clinical residency in a high-need middle or high school.

According to Mercy College, the MISTI program will emphasize community building. Program participants will complete their student teaching requirements at Harry S Truman High School in the Bronx, Ossining Public Schools, Public Schools of the Tarrytowns, and Yonkers Public Schools.

The MISTI program is also collaborating with Bronx Community College, Rockland Community College, and Westchester Community College. “This project creates a new pathway for community college students in and around New York City to become STEM educators," said Alfred S. Posamentier, dean of Education at Mercy College School, in a prepared statement.

Mercy College is a private, not-for-profit liberal arts college with four campuses in and around New York City, as well as an online campus. It serves more than 11,000 students and employs nearly 200 full-time professors.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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