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Hispanics in the Pipeline: Foundations of Persistence from Middle School to STEM Careers

Primary Investigator(s): Stuart Karabenick

Funding Agency: University of California-Irvine/NSF

Period: 9/15/2015 - 8/31/2018

This three-year study is designed to further understand how motivation directs the career aspirations, educational pathways and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) attainment of Hispanics, including Hispanic youths’ decisions to participate in STEM and follow through or drop out of the STEM pipeline. It builds on an extensive existing longitudinal study of predominantly Hispanic and low-income middle and high school students (N = 15,000) in grades 7-12 in Southern California obtained with prior NSF support from the Math and Science Partnership Program. A selected sample of 1,500 students will result in a 15-year database of information that focuses on the motivational determinants of STEM aspirations, persistence, and attainment among this underrepresented community. The findings will illuminate targeted ways to foster the motivation and engagement of Hispanic STEM aspirants to complete their high school and college degree requirements and increase the likelihood they remain in the STEM pipeline.