Fayetteville State University’s Department of Chemistry and Physics Faculty Serve as Mentors for TRIO High School Students through Research & Engineering Apprenticeship Program

Fayetteville State University’s (FSU) Office of College Access & Success Programs has been granted a Research & Engineering Apprenticeship Program (REAP) funded by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP).  REAP is a summer program that places talented high school students, from groups historically under-represented and underserved in STEM, in research apprenticeships under the direct supervision of university researchers.

FSU joins other post-secondary institutions across the nation with providing these opportunities during summer of 2017. REAP apprentices work under the direct supervision of a mentor on a hands-on research project. REAP apprentices are exposed to the real world of research, they gain valuable mentorship, and they learn about education and career opportunities in STEM.   According to Dr. Subir Nagdas, a biochemist and REAP mentor, “I am excited about the opportunity to support this project by helping high school students to develop an understanding of the process of research, this investment helps to spark curiosity and understanding of biochemistry.  Over the summer the apprentice will perform a research project and will do the poster presentation at the end of the program.  Every student in my laboratory actively participates in the scientific process, such as testing hypotheses, designing and executing experiments, and interpretation of the results.”

Dr. Shubo Han, a scientist of analytical chemistry and nanotechnology and a professor of chemistry, will also serve as a mentor. According to Dr. Han, he and his apprentice will investigate isoflavones in kudzu, an invasive and fast growing plant, for its potential health benefit in preventing alcoholism and chronic diseases.

Dr. Samuel Adu-Mireku, Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, stated, “the Department of Chemistry and Physics prepares students to become future chemists, science teachers, doctors, pharmacists, and dentists.  These two faculty members have a sterling record of mentoring not only college students attending our institution, but also high school students through opportunities such as REAP.  Fayetteville State University is a leading institution of opportunity and diversity, and we are committed to preparing the next generation of students interested in pursuing further education and careers in the STEM fields.”

To learn more about the initiative, please contact Dr. Teresa Thompson-Pinckney at tpinckney@uncfsu.edu or 910-672-1870.  In addition, you may visit the website at http://www.usaeop.com/programs/apprenticeships/reap/ to learn more about the national model. 

The Office of College Access & Success Programs’ mission is to encourage and assist youth who are traditionally under-represented in post-secondary education with preparation for, entry into, and completion of a post-secondary education.   The Office of College Access & Success Programs is comprised of federally funded programs that include TRIO Talent Search, TRIO Upward Bound, TRIO Upward Bound Math & Science, 21st Century Community Learning Centers and AmeriCorps VISTA.  The Office provides rigorous college preparatory services to students, parents, and educators in Cumberland, Hoke, and Robeson Counties.