Igniting Undergraduate STEMM Engagement: Developing Culturally Responsive STEMM Professionals

Mariam Manuel
Instructional Assistant Professor
University of Houston

The STEM Research Inquiry Summer Enrichment (STEM RISE) program is a collaborative project between the University of Houston (UH) College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics STEM teacher preparation program, teachHOUSTON, and the UH College of Medicine. STEM RISE activities and strategic planning are conducted in partnership with community leaders and Jack Yates High School in Third Ward, where UH resides. The program is designed to better prepare future STEM teachers and medical professionals to be culturally responsive in their practice, while simultaneously supporting high school students from underrepresented populations in conducting empirical STEM research in laboratory settings. The high school participants are from a predominantly African American, lower SES, area of Third Ward in Houston, TX. During the summer of 2021, the STEM RISE team conducted a pilot which allowed preservice STEM teachers to work collaboratively with graduate/medical students to develop hands-on lessons that were inclusive of STEMM research content. The presenters will share the collaborative process used in building community partnerships, the planning process used in redesigning preservice STEM teacher preparation to include empirical STEM research engagement for undergraduates, the intended and unintended outcomes from the multi-layered mentoring model being implemented, and changes being made in preparation for the first-year implementation of the project. Moreover, the STEM RISE program enlists help from a multidisciplinary advisory board including leaders from UH and the community of Third Ward. Prompts and materials used to engage the advisory board will also be shared during this presentation.


Jacqueline Ekeoba, jnekeoba@Central.UH.EDU; Thomas Thesen, tthesen@Central.UH.EDU