Valentine, scheduled to defend her dissertation in March 2006 at Johns Hopkins University's Department of Physics and Astronomy, shares her graduate school experiences and talks about her preparation for her thesis defense.
While the overall NSF EHR budget took another round of cuts, Thompson believes individual programs aimed at diversifying the scientific workforce will continue to meet the agency's objective to keep youth "engaged" in science.
Established in 1990 with funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Louisiana Board of Regents, the Timbuktu Academy is an award-winning mentoring program for underrepresented minorities in STEM fields.
Despite their different backgrounds, these four GEM students have dealt with the same issues--moving to larger schools, cultural isolation, unexpected crises, and family considerations--that all students of color face when transitioning into graduate school.
The GEM Consortium -- a collaboration of 93 member universities and 48 corporations -- provides funding, a support network, mentoring, and professional development to underrepresented minority graduate students.