Published: March 21, 2000

A $220,000 award from the National Science Foundation to the University of Colorado at Boulder will be used to help undergraduates and graduate students with pressing financial needs in the College of Engineering and Applied Science and the mathematics and applied mathematics departments.

The two-year award is part of the agency’s initiative for increasing technical training in the workforce, said Associate Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Education Michael Grant, the principal author of the winning NSF proposal.

"This may be the largest direct scholarship award ever made to the campus by NSF," he said. Grant is a professor in CU-Boulder’s environmental, population and organismic biology department.

"Our goal is to enhance the graduation rates of our students, especially underrepresented groups such as women and minorities," he said. "I think our strong record in supporting existing programs like the Minority Arts and Sciences Program, the Women in Engineering Program and the Success in Engineering through Excellence and Diversity Program helped the university win this award."

CU’s excellence in the various disciplines within engineering and math also played a part in winning the proposal, Grant speculated.

A committee of faculty members is being formed to establish selection criteria for the scholarship winners, he said. The plans are to make two or three rounds of awards each year, primarily in the form of partial scholarships, he said.

"The aim is to help students succeed and graduate, especially when financial constraints are making the process more difficult," said Grant. "We want the money to go where it will do the most good. I’m pleased for the university and happy for the students who will be participating to help them achieve success."