RAMP-UP (Recognizing Accelerated Mathematics Potential in Underrepresented People
North Carolina State University
This collaboration between NCSU, Shaw University (the nation’s oldest Historically Black College/University), Wake County Public Schools, and the GE Foundation joins 35 undergraduate and five graduate students in STEM or math education with 50 teachers at eight schools. In addition to spending 10-15 hours per week in classrooms, our fellows have developed a “Family Math Night in a Box” that we have used at six elementary schools. To date, over 1100 parents have learned new and innovative ways to help their children learn math. Fellows report that the program has made them more satisfied with their college experience; directly and positively impacted their communication, planning, interpersonal and management skills; and made them much more aware of the issues facing the K-12 world. The ability to explain a complex idea in simpler terms is a life skill cited as one of the most valuable gained from the program. Approximately 50% of undergraduate fellows indicate a new interest in graduate study, and both groups see this experience as a potential step toward the professoriate. The role model aspect of this program is hard to measure, yet is one of the most fundamental advantages cited by teachers, parents, students and fellows. Our target schools have diverse student populations and this program draws a similar diverse group of fellows. In 2005, 65% of our fellows were women and 35% African American.