Funded DTA Projects

Strengthening the Purdue Pipeline for Underrepresented Minority Student Matriculation: Addressing Financial Constraints, Improving Retention, and Assessing Student Experiences

PI: Anil Bajaj, William E. and Florence E. Perry Head of Mechanical Engineering and Alpha P. Jamison Professor of Mechanical of Engineering


This initiative is designed to increase the number of underrepresented minority students enrolled in mechanical engineering, and to ensure that enrolled students graduate. The team has identified current programming that works, as well as gaps that, when filled, could substantially expand the applicant pool and address attrition that occurs after the first year. The project will engage in-state and scholarship-bearing students; develop a sophomore bridge program to improve the transition into Mechanical Engineering (ME); develop a rotation program with student financial support to strengthen diversity and inclusion within the ME community; conduct an ethnographic study of student experiences; and initiate internal processes to develop resources for long-term sustainability.

Team members: George Chiu, professor, Mechanical Engineering; Patricia Davies, professor, ME; Nicole Key, associate professor, ME; Eric Nauman, professor, ME; Tahira Reid, assistant professor, ME; Virginia Booth-Womack, director, Minority Engineering Program; Darryl Dickerson, associate director, MEP; Jim Jones, associate head, ME.

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