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Photo via Shutterstock
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Nearly $1 million in funding has been allocated to Queens College in Flushing to help Hispanic and low-income students graduate with degrees in the school’s science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs.

Congresswoman Grace Meng announced on Monday, Nov. 21, the $968,562 grant awarded to Queens College for maintaining and improving its Hispanic-Serving Institutions STEM Program, an initiative to improve and expand the school’s capacity to service Hispanic and other low-income students.

According to Queens College President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, over one-third of currently enrolled undergraduate students at the school have majors in the STEM field and over half of those students are minority students.

Colleges in the United States are not producing enough STEM graduates to meet workforce demands, according to the U.S. Department of Education (ED). These funds, allocated by the ED, will be used to improve access, learning and mentoring opportunities for students in the STEM program at Queens College as well as Queensborough College — two City University of New York (CUNY) institutions.

“This is a very innovative and transformational grant opportunity that will spark great growth in our STEM enrollment,” Rodríguez said. “And the beauty of this Hispanic-Serving Institutions grant is that it will help all students — not just Latinos and low-income students — because the curricular changes and programs developed will be open to all students here and at Queensborough.”

The project is renewable annually for up to five years with the projected budget totaling $5.6 million.

“STEM plays an important role in our city, state and nation and will continue to do so in the future,” Meng said. “It is crucial that we attract students to the STEM fields, especially traditionally underrepresented students, in order to meet the demand for STEM skills, and these federal funds will help accomplish that here in our borough. I thank Queens College for all its efforts in STEM, and I’m thrilled to deliver the good news about these critical funds.”

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