Degree Fields
State Portals
Industry Options
Precollege Ideas
Academic DegreesCareer Planning
University Choice
Diversity & WomenCornerstone News
Site Search / A -Z

Bookmark and Share


Many organizations offer programs for underrepresented minorities that focus on science, mathematics, engineering, and healthcare. The Career Cornerstone Center supports efforts to attract a larger percentage of women and underrepresented ethnic minorities into the study of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, computing, and healthcare. 

The following chart shows ethnicity and gender information based on research by the American Society for Engineering Engineering:

Source: American Society for Engineering Education, 2010

University Resources
Many universities offer special programs to support underrepresented minorities.  For example the Minority Engineering Program Office at the University of Michigan  is a resource for students, educators, and employers alike. The office offers a variety of precollege programs, and also resources for university level students. Check with your local university to find out what resources they may offer, including special events, summer programs, Saturday workshops, and other resources for underrepresented minorities.

Mentoring Opportunities
Some universities and companies have established mentoring programs to link students with professionals.  An example is the University of Notre Dame's Minority Engineering Program, which offers E-mentoring support to students.

Summer Programs
Summer programs are great opportunities for students to explore different career fields.  There are also several focused specifically for underrepresented minorities, including the following:

ALVA is a paid, high technology, 9 to 10 week summer internship experience for entering University of Washington freshmen students.

Summer Minority Engineering Training Program  at the Colorado School of Mines

The Summer Medical and Dental Education Program -- a partnership of the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Dental Education Association -- provides six weeks of free educational enrichment to pre-medical and pre-dental college freshmen and sophomores throughout the summer.

MITES (Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science) is a rigorous six-week residential, academic enrichment summer program for promising high school juniors at MIT who are interested in studying and exploring careers in science, engineering, and entrepreneurship.

Precollege Programs
Many universities have special programs for  underrepresented minorities at the high school level, including the following:

IMPRINT is a program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign that pairs promising high school seniors with a faculty member on campus or with an employer. The experience is intended to introduce students to engineering and motivate them to remain in the College of Engineering.

In addition, many professional associations offer precollege resources, including:

- American Indian Science and Engineering Society
National Society of Black Engineers
- National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering

- Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers

Scholarship Opportunities
Many universities have scholarship programs specifically for high achieving underrepresented minorities.  Be sure to check with universities you are considering about whether they have a minority or diversity office, and find out what services, programs, materials, scholarships, and events they sponsor.  Some professional societies also offer scholarship programs, such as the American Physical Society's Scholarship for Minority Undergraduate Physics Majors. Se
veral organizations link to minority scholarship sites, such as 200 Free Scholarships For Minorities. Other scholarships can be searched on the College Board website.

Professional Association Support
Several special focus professional associations have developed to help serve the needs of our diverse workforce.  Many of these groups also have student chapters, which can help form valuable networking opportunities at an early age.  For example, NSBE Jr. membership is available for pre-college students in grades 6 through 12, and the American Indian Science and Engineering Society has a K-12 Affiliated Schools Program.

The following is a sampling of organizations that support underrepresented minorities; a full list is available on the Cornerstone association page:

Career Cornerstone Center Profile Excerpts
The following excerpts from Cornerstone profiles address the issue of diversity:

Arnold Motley

Systems Engineer
IBM Corporation
Raleigh, NC

"I was surprised, pleasantly surprised, when I joined on at IBM. There's a big diversity here, a lot of different minorities, men, women, young, old, I mean you cover the entire gambit here and I was happy to see that when I got here. It made my transition from college to employment a lot easier."
Download Full Profile as PDF  View Full Profile Online

Dwight L. Williams, Ph.D., P.E.

Chief Engineer/Principal Nuclear Physicist
U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), Technical Applications Division

"Without real world professional experiences (internships, co-ops, etc.) it can be difficult to appreciate how fast (and slow in some cases) things happen in the real world. School helped me to be the best me that I can be -- technically, socially, and personally. With the foundation that I developed in school, I have been pretty successful in navigating my way to a place of satisfaction."
Download Full Profile as PDF  View Full Profile Online

Brent Miyazaki

Environmental Services Program Manager
Whittier, CA

"One of the things that they can do that's very easy in some universities, maybe not as easy in others, but places where I went to school, we had a tremendous ethnic diversity of students and that includes foreign students from other parts of the world. And by socializing with people from all walks of life, we can learn about the similarities and the differences between us, between the cultures. It's very easy to sit and ask someone, over a meal or a drink - well, what is life like where you're from?"
Download Full Profile as PDF  View Full Profile Online



      AboutContactsCopyrightMedia SupportSubscriptions