HOPE: A Quantitative Methodology to Determining the Effects of an Educational STEM Program.

Norberto Michel Hernandez Valdes-Portela
Hostos Community College, City University of New York

This analysis aims to construct a quantitative methodology that can evaluate the effectiveness of the Hostos Oasis for Parents’ Education (HOPE) program’s 3D model to increase credit accumulation and graduation and to better position student parents to transfer to four-year institutions or the workforce. HOPE is a five-year Two-Generation (2Gen) STEM summer program that begins in summer 2022 at Hostos Community College, a two-year Hispanic-Serving Institution (HIS) in the South Bronx. The program focuses on student parents, a segment of the community college population where the motivation for college completion is strong. However, they face multiple barriers that conspire against their academic performance. Their aspiration to graduate or transfer to a four-year college is impacted by the necessity to balance their parental responsibilities with work-school-household obligations, leaving them with very little time to dedicate to schoolwork. Time poverty (the low quality and quantity of time) is the factor mentioned in the relevant literature as the fundamental barrier that affects their college outcome. HOPE anticipates that providing these students with family, academic, and social and professional support will help mitigate the low quality and quantity of time left after non-schoolwork obligations and, as a result, improve their academic performance. To evaluate the effectiveness of this intervention, the program required the development of a quantitative methodology. Ten variables were identified of importance to be estimated. They will control for the student sample’s sociodemographic and time poverty profile, the academic, family, and social and professional support provided by the program, and the sense of belonging to the program. The information will be collected through the distribution of pre- and post-program surveys. An analysis will be carried out in three steps to determine the statistical significance of these variables. First, a paired sample t-test will examine whether mean differences exist in pre- and post-HOPE summer program ratings. Second, we will explore the characteristics of participants in the HOPE program. A two-way repeated-measures ANOVA will compare the differences between groups split into two within-subjects factors (e.g., men vs. women, completers vs. control group). Third and finally, a logistic regression using backward elimination will be performed to determine the significant variables that explain the success of the HOPE model. These variables will provide valuable insights into the challenges student parents face in postsecondary education and how to address these challenges as a model program that can be replicated and expanded.


Norberto Michel Hernandez Valdes-Portela, Hostos Community College, City University of New York, New York