Higher Education STEM Resources to Help Promote Diversity

While STEM careers have always held a respectable place in society, they haven’t always been welcoming and inclusive to many people. As a result, many industries within the field of STEM, such as science and tech, have traditionally been particularly one-dimensional in terms of diversity.

Thankfully, this has begun to change over the last decade as more and more initiatives strive to promote a diverse makeup of individuals within STEM. From widely available nurse practitioner scholarships to support for marginalized individuals in tech, the field of STEM is on a path of inclusivity that will hopefully mark a radical shift in the makeup of workers in STEM organizations.

While there is still room for improvement, current initiatives are planting the seeds of a radical and dramatic shift in the number of diverse individuals choosing to study STEM subjects in their higher education careers.

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Higher Education STEM Resources to Help Promote Diversity

higher education stem resources

Understanding some of the most potent and practical resources for promoting diversity in education and the workforce can give one a more nuanced perspective on the STEM field and how it is evolving in today’s modern age.

Here are some higher education STEM resources to help promote diversity that STEM students can take advantage of.

1. The Grace Hopper Program’s Ada Lovelace Scholarship and Edie Winsor Scholarship

For those who are unaware, Ada Lovelace was a pioneering woman in STEM. Lovelace created the first ever computer program back in 1843 for an analysis machine designed by another Mathematician.

Though only part of a prototype was created for the machine, Lovelace’s legacy and contribution to the programming field live on today across the STEM field.

One of the premier online coding schools today is Fullstack Academy, which offers a unique program called the Grace Hopper program that caters to women and non-binary coders.

In honor of Ada Lovelace, Fullstack Academy offers a scholarship called the Ada Lovelace scholarship, which helps cover costs for women and non-binary individuals who attend the Grace Hopper program.

The Ada Lovelace scholarship awards $1,000 to qualifying students of the Grace Hopper program who pay their tuition in full before beginning the course.

For women and non-binary individuals interested in pursuing a career in coding, this scholarship can be both encouraging and welcoming, highlighting the fact that diverse individuals are welcome in the tech industry.

In addition to the Ada Lovelace scholarship, individuals interested in pursuing the Fullstack AcaAcademy’sace Hopper Program can also take advantage of the Edie Winsor scholarship, which will cover half of the entire tuition for the program.

This scholarship is offered by Fullstck through their partnership with an organization called Lesbians Who Tech, which champions, assists, and promotes diverse individuals in the tech space.

To qualify for the Edie Winsor scholarship, students must identify as LGBTQ+ or gender non-conforming. The substantial tuition these scholarships cover represents that attitudes are changing in STEM and tech, and more and more coding resources for women appear with each passing day.

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2. Girls Who Code: College and Career Programs

Girls Who Code is a website and organization that offers assistance, support, and the chance to find a like-minded community for college-aged women and non-binary individuals in tech.

They offer a range of programs such as interview-prep courses, hiring summits, and programs for students to join communities on their respective campuses with other women and non-binary individuals pursuing a career in tech.

For many individuals from diverse backgrounds and marginalized groups, attending an institution to pursue a career in tech can be intimidating. The prospect of feeling left out and unwelcome is enough to turn most people away from pursuing a particular career or field of study.

Thankfully, organizations such as Girls Who Code are taking a stand and combating these instances through their efforts. While to those from backgrounds who aren’t traditionally marginalized community and a sense of belonging may seem like a small and inconsequential part of one’s experience in higher education. For many, this is a defining part of their college career.

By taking advantage of the different resources that Girls Who Code offers, women and non-binary students can pursue their careers in tech with confidence and a sense of community. In addition, becoming active in these communities can offer potent networking opportunities that can often be much more difficult for people from marginalized groups to engage in.

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3. Society of Women Engineers Scholarships

The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) is a fantastic organization working tirelessly to help promote women who have worked in engineering and related fields for decades. To help promote their vision and mission of seeing more women in engineering-related fields, the SWE awards various scholarships to women pursuing an engineering and computer science education.

In 2021 alone, the SWE awarded over one million dollars in scholarships to women pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees. This vast sum of money being put forth by the SWE to bolster women in STEM highlights the fact that the future of STEM will be far more diverse than it was in previous generations.

To be eligible for one of the many scholarships offered by the SWE, students must have at least a 3.0 GPA, identify as a woman, and pursue an education in a qualifying program. For those interested in receiving this scholarship, it can be helpful to identify which programs qualify one to receive a scholarship from the SWE before applying to and attending them.

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4. Elevate Women in Technology Scholarship

The Elevate Women in Technology Scholarship is funded by Calvin Rosse, a retired executive
who was successful in the technology space. The scholarship awards $500 a year to women
pursuing a career in STEM or a field that deals with technology in a meaningful way.
The vision behind the scholarship is to help combat the disheartening fact that women are
significantly underrepresented in the STEM space.

What makes this scholarship special is that it is available to women at any point in their college
career, whether they’re in their first semester of an undergraduate program or are pursuing a
doctorate in a technologically-related field. Typically, however, it is students who can show that
they are actively involved in activities or pursuits in the STEM space that are chosen to be
recipients of the scholarship.

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5. Kode with Klossy

Kode with Klossy is a non-profit organization that exposes girls and young women to coding to make the industry more gender-diverse. With a range of classes and resources, Kode with Klossy is planting the seed of a career in STEM for young girls and women in a profound and impactful way.

One particularly fantastic program offered by Kode with Klossy is their free two-week Summer coding course for girls and non-binary individuals between the ages of thirteen and eighteen years old. To be eligible, girls and non-binary individuals only need to be interested in coding. Prior experience with coding is not a requisite for attending the program, making it a truly accessible and welcoming resource.

Kode with Klossy notes that most students — nine out of ten — a state that they intend to pursue an education in coding after completing the course. This means that Kode with Klossy is actively making future higher education STEM departments more diverse by exposing more girls and non-binary individuals to the fact that they can carve out a career in coding for themselves.

One of the unique parts about the Kode with Klossy non-profit organization is the fact
that they offer high-quality resources that are entirely free. This means that regardless of an
individual’s monetary situation, Kode with Klossy programs are accessible and welcoming.

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6. Black Girls Code

Black Girls Code is a fantastic organization with various resources for black girls and women in the coding industry. The organization has resources focusing on various coding fields, including artificial intelligence, robotics, 3D printing, web design, and more.

Black Girls Code aims to help black girls and women find community and confidence in coding. They offer a range of resources that can make an impactful difference in the lives of many individuals by making them feel more supported, represented, and capable of coding.

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7. Women in Tech Scholarships

Women in Tech (WIT) is a notable organization founded to empower girls and women in STEM. They offer various resources and support to girls and women pursuing STEM careers.

One fundamental way WIT empowers girls and women in their educational pursuits is through impactful scholarships. Two notable scholarships offered by the organization are the WIT Girls Scholarship and the WIT Campus scholarship.

The WIT Girls Scholarship awards anywhere between $2,500 and $20,000 to confident girls and women who are high school seniors in Georgia. To be eligible for the scholarship, students must actively participate in a WIT program. In addition, students must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher and display both an interest in STEM and instances of leadership in STEM-related pursuits, projects, or activities.

The WIT Campus Scholarship awards up to $10,000 to women pursuing a college degree in a STEM field in Georgia. Students hoping to qualify for this scholarship must be enrolled full-time with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

The sums of money the WIT awards to girls and women involved in STEM demonstrate their commitment to bolstering women in STEM and increasing representation. While these two scholarships are only available in Georgia now, they will hopefully expand and be available to girls and women in STEM nationwide.

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8. The Coding Space

The Coding Space is an organization that offers after-school programs and camps for children and teens to learn how to code. Both in-person and online classes are offered, making it a fantastic resource accessible to almost everyone, regardless of location.

As opposed to many traditional coding classes and camps, The Coding Space puts an
emphasis on going at one’s own pace, making it inviting, stimulating, and manageable for

younger children first being exposed to the world of coding. Given that experiences such as
these will significantly inform what field of study one goes into; it makes sense that the programs
offered by The Coding Space are making STEM departments in higher education institutions
more diverse and, as a result, more welcoming to various individuals.

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9. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners Scholarship Program

The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) Scholarship Program is catered toward individuals studying to become nurse practitioners.

Ranging from $2,500 to $5,000, this scholarship is available to all students with a registered nurse license who have completed at least one semester at a graduate nursing program in which they are currently enrolled.

While in the past, nursing may have been seen as a traditionally female job, attitudes have begun to change significantly.

In addition, nurse practitioners often act in the capacity of doctors and can even open their private practices, resulting in highly lucrative salaries. The AANP scholarship program invites individuals from every background to pursue a lucrative career in STEM that can offer them agency and stability.

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STEM Is Becoming a More Inclusive and Diverse Field

Though STEM has traditionally had a bad reputation for not being very diverse and inclusive, sentiments within the industry have begun to shift radically over the past decade.

With more and more resources and initiatives that aim to aid and support those from marginalized backgrounds in STEM fields becoming available, both higher education institutions and STEM organizations are beginning to look and feel more diverse.

While progress is still to be made in the coming years, it looks like STEM programs are on a path to becoming extremely diverse, welcoming, and inclusive settings.

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