AMS Climate Course To Reach 100 More Minority-Serving Institutions

September 19, 2011 · 0 comments

The AMS Education Program has been awarded a grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to implement the AMS Climate Studies course at 100 minority-serving institutions (MSIs) over a five-year period. The project will focus on introducing and enhancing geoscience coursework at MSIs nationwide, especially those that are signatories to the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) and/or members of the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation. AMS is partnering with Second Nature, the non-profit organization administering the ACUPCC.
“This national network involves more than 670 colleges and universities who are committed to eliminating net greenhouse gas emissions from campus operations by promoting the education and research needed for the rest of society to do the same,” explains Jim Brey, director of the AMS Education Program. “AMS and Second Nature will work together to demonstrate to current and potential MSI signatories how AMS Climate Studies introduces or enhances sustainability-focused curricula.”
In the first four years of the project, AMS will hold a weeklong AMS Climate Studies course implementation workshops for about 25 MSI faculty members. The annual workshops will feature scientists from NOAA, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, University of Maryland, Howard University, George Mason University, and other Washington, DC area institutions. Faculty will initially offer AMS Climate Studies in the year following workshop attendance and colleges that successfully implement AMS Climate Studies will be encouraged to build a focused geoscience curricula area by also offering AMS Weather Studies and AMS Ocean Studies.
“The major outcomes of this project will be a large network of faculty trained as change agents in their institutions, sustained offering of AMS undergraduate courses within MSIs, and the introduction of thousands of MSI students to the geosciences,” comments Brey. He notes that this project builds on the success of similar NSF-supported programs for MSI faculty implementing the AMS Weather Studies and AMS Ocean Studies courses, which together have reached 200 MSIs and over 18,000 MSI students. “We’re looking forward to working with Second Nature to continue to expand the climate course and the education that it represents.”