The Summer Employment Program at NOAA's National Severe Storms Laboratory: An Experiment in the Scientific Mentorship of Undergraduates

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  • 1 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Environmental Research Laboratories, National Severe Storms Laboratory, Norman, Oklahoma
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In an effort to encourage college students to consider careers in scientific research, NOAA's National Severe Storms Laboratory has instituted a Summer Employment Program. The program is centered around a scientific mentorship experience that matches each student with a laboratory scientist. During the nominal 12 weeks of the program, the scientist leads and directs a research project that is designed to be commensurate with the student's background. Along with the research experience, there is an educational component that encompasses both classroom work and experimentation. Additionally, students are introduced to a variety of research efforts in the laboratory through a continuing series of guest lectures by lab scientists.

The program has operated in 1987, 1989, and 1990, and has included 17 students, 12 of whom have come from under-represented groups in our society. We report on the evolution of the program and scrutinize the results after these three years of effort.

In an effort to encourage college students to consider careers in scientific research, NOAA's National Severe Storms Laboratory has instituted a Summer Employment Program. The program is centered around a scientific mentorship experience that matches each student with a laboratory scientist. During the nominal 12 weeks of the program, the scientist leads and directs a research project that is designed to be commensurate with the student's background. Along with the research experience, there is an educational component that encompasses both classroom work and experimentation. Additionally, students are introduced to a variety of research efforts in the laboratory through a continuing series of guest lectures by lab scientists.

The program has operated in 1987, 1989, and 1990, and has included 17 students, 12 of whom have come from under-represented groups in our society. We report on the evolution of the program and scrutinize the results after these three years of effort.

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