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Overview of the HBCU-UP TEAL Program

Funded by The National Science Foundation (NSF), The Delaware State University (DSU) HBCU UP Implementation project—Transforming Education through Active Learning, or TEAL overall goal is to broaden the participation of historically underrepresented students in the U.S. STEM enterprise.

Seen as a viable way to expand experiential learning to transform STEM education at DSU and increase the retention of students enrolled in science and engineering programs, the HBCU-UP grant ultimately assists DSU in greatly achieving its strategic goal of Student Success.

TEAL will transform first and second-year laboratory courses by introducing students to research through authentic inquiry activities. The grant will help fund the redesign of traditional laboratory exercises to connect the research to real-world problems.

The initiative includes the development of a peer teaching and learning model to develop the leadership skills of advanced students to help prepare them for graduate school or employment. The initiative also seeks to bridge the gap of understanding between DSU and potential employers through the development of partnerships and internship opportunities.

Key individuals in the TEAL initiative are:

  • Dr. Clytrice Watson, Associate Provost, Principal Investigator (PI)
    cawatson [at] desu.edu
  • Dr. Anthea Aikins, Assistant professor of biological sciences, Co-PI
    aaikins [at] desu.edu
  • Dr. Marcel Poe, Director of the CAST Advisement Center, Co-PI​​​​​​​
    mpoe [at] desu.edu
  • Dr. Delayne Johnson, Associate professor of mathematics, CO-PI​​​​​​​
    dejohnson [at] desu.edu
  • Dr. Kimberly Milligan, Visiting professor of chemistry, CO-PI​​​​​​​
    kmilligan [at] desu.edu
  • Dr. Shanetta S. Lillard, Program Director​​​​​​​
    slillard [at] desu.edu

STEM Leadership Academy

The STEM Leadership Academy provides an opportunity for students to develop the discipline specific knowledge and “soft skills” necessary to be effective peer mentors and campus leaders, and to successfully transition from college to graduate school and professional careers. By assuming a student leadership role as a peer mentor on campus, Fellows will broaden their interpersonal and leadership skills through engagement, collaboration, and service learning.

Training Sessions. The STEM Leadership Academy consists of five, 4-hour sessions typically held on Saturdays. Each session is designed to enhance various skills including networking, motivating others, conflict resolution, interpersonal skills and successful communication, and equitable and ethical treatment of others, all of which equip Fellows with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions for their roles as leaders and peer mentors. The Academy collaborates with government, industry, and academia to provide event speakers, conduct mock interviews and identify candidates for STEM internship positions.

Leadership Forums. Throughout the junior and senior years, TEAL Fellows receive ongoing STEM Leadership Academy training and support via fall semester Leadership forums that support development in both strands, Leadership of Others and Leadership of Self. There are 2 leadership forums held during the fall semester. Experienced Fellows will actively participate as session leaders in the next Spring Leadership Academy for the next cohort of TEAL Fellows.

Faculty Development

The HBCU-UP TEAL Program provides faculty with experiential learning opportunities to translate back to students, while building strong STEM partnerships with academic, government, and industrial agencies through workshops, conferences and presentations. Faculty will participate in workshops and conferences in the academic, government or industrial sector, to gain an understanding of the cultural dynamics, technical training requirements and sustainability of future STEM graduate students or employees. The primary goal is for faculty to transfer their experience into course curricula and professional development activities for our students.