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Blinn awarded more than $700,000 for science, tech, engineering and math scholarships

T-STEM Challenge Scholarship Program encourages students to pursue high-demand fields

July 9, 2015

Blinn College has been awarded more than $700,000 to encourage students to pursue high-demand careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Now in its third year of participation, Blinn has been awarded $721,900 for distribution through the Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (T-STEM) Challenge Scholarship Program. The program was established by House Bill 2910 in 2011 and is funded through a grant from the Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation, provided to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

The T-STEM scholarship program makes it possible for community and technical colleges to provide merit-based scholarships to qualifying, high-achieving students pursuing careers in STEM and related fields. Blinn was awarded $427,000 in 2013 and $562,500 in 2014.

In a 2011 report, the U.S. Department of Commerce said STEM jobs had grown three times as fast as non-STEM jobs over the previous 10 years and that STEM workers command 26 percent higher wages than their non-STEM counterparts. The report noted that STEM degree holders enjoy higher earnings even if they work in a non-STEM occupation.

“Science, technology, engineering and mathematics jobs are in incredible demand as we grow the biotechnical and research industry in the Brazos Valley and throughout the state,” said Michelle McGehee, T-STEM Program director and biology instructor. “These scholarships will help students engage in their education full-time as they develop career pathways in majors that often lead to high-paying, high-demand jobs.”

As a participating college, Blinn is partnering with local business and industry to identify local employment needs in STEM occupations and develop part-time employment opportunities for scholarship recipients.
Initial scholarship eligibility requirements include:

  • graduation from high school with at least a 3.0 grade point average on a four-point scale in mathematics and science courses.
  • enrollment or the intent to enroll at Blinn and declared in a STEM instructional program.
  • if male, students must have a statement on file indicating registration with the Selective Service System as required by federal law, or exempt from registration.

Scholarships are renewable for students who remain enrolled in a STEM instructional program, maintain an overall GPA of 3.0, complete 80 percent of all semester hours attempted and complete 30 credit hours in the previous academic year.
Eligible programs include biology, chemistry, geology, mathematics, physics, dental hygiene, emergency medical technician, veterinary technician, physical therapist assistant, radiologic technology, information technology administrator, Microsoft certificate and Linux specialist.

Students enrolled in the Texas A&M Engineering Academy at Blinn, which gives talented students an opportunity to pursue their engineering degree while co-enrolled at Texas A&M University and Blinn, and students pursuing Blinn’s new Associate of Science in engineering are also eligible for T-STEM scholarship funds. TEAM (Transfer Enrollment at A&M) Program students are also eligible.

For more information or to apply for the scholarship, visit: www.blinn.edu/finaid/scholar.html.
Scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Students can be awarded as much as $5,000 and are encouraged to apply while funds remain available.

About Blinn College
A comprehensive community college committed to educational excellence and to individual and community enhancement, Blinn College has served its 13-county Central Texas region since 1883. With an enrollment of 19,317 students, Blinn ranks among the nation’s leaders in transferring students to leading four-year universities and has received national recognition for affordable educational excellence.

Blinn offers job seekers the skills and credentials they need to succeed in the region’s fast-growing industries, and partners with local businesses to provide skills development training for incumbent employees. Each year, Blinn programs and students make a $345.3 million impact on the local economy.

For more information about Blinn College and exciting student success initiatives such as Destination Success: First-Year Focus and the Blinn TEAM Program, visit www.blinn.edu or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.