Chevron gives CSUB science programs another boost

Dr. Horace Mitchell, CSUB President, expresses his appreciation for Chevron's commitment to education in our community at a press conference held Tuesday, Feb. 21 at Bakersfield College.

Since 2007, Chevron Corp. has been funding science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) initiatives at California State University, Bakersfield to tune of more than $2 million. Now, Chevron is again generously giving to a cause dear to its heart: educating future scientists and engineers in our community who will hopefully choose to stay and work in our region.

The oil company, which operates oil fields in Kern County, is announcing today a $1.55 million donation to CSUB, Bakersfield College, Taft College, and a handful of local high schools and middle schools. More than half of the donation – $900,000 – will go to CSUB for five initiatives aimed at increasing educational opportunities for current and prospective college students. Those initiatives are:

$400,000: Supports the REVS-UP 2012 program, which offers hands-on research experience for high school students and teachers during the summer. The 2011 program  brought 89 high school students and 25 high school teachers to CSUB to work on research projects alongside CSUB faculty and students in areas of biology, chemistry, computer science, earth system science, geology, math and physics. This year’s projects will take place from July 16 to Aug. 9. Applications are due March 2. For more information, visit www.csub.edu/stem.

$200,000: CSUB-Chevron High School Academy, which provides free, college-level science courses to students in the Kern High School District. Starting in Fall 2012, high school students will be able to take free evening classes at CSUB to earn up to 15 transferable units. The one-year, three-quarter sequences will provide the foundation for a major in biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering, geology, mathematics or physics. Students must apply by March 23, 2012. For more information, call the NSME Student Center at 661-654-6322.

$100,000: School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics, and Engineering’s Student Center, which provides advising and registration help for current, prospective and transfer students. The center also offers information about scholarships, majors and tutoring. It is located in Science I, Room 116. For more info, visit www.csub.edu/science.

$130,000: Dual credit geology courses for high school students where they earn high school and college credit at the same time. CSUB partners with Kern High School District to offer college-level geology courses at South High and Ridgeview High, and plans to expand the program to more local high schools.

$90,000: Supports the development of a bachelor’s degree in engineering sciences. After CSUB launched its first engineering degree program – in computer engineering – in Fall 2011, enrollment is already outpacing expectations. Students are clamoring for more options. Last week, the Academic Senate at CSUB approved new degree programs in electrical engineering and engineering science, both scheduled to start in Fall 2012. Because of a lack in state funding, the engineering degrees at CSUB are funded by grants and donations.

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