Holyoke Community College Receives Grant For STEM Majors Holyoke Community College will be able to award some very lucky students working hard towards degrees in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields with 20 scholarships each year for the next five years. The ability to offer STEM students these scholarships comes as a result of a very generous award of $625,540 from a grant from the National Science Foundation and is part of the “Holyoke Community College STEM Scholars Program.” The grant is expected to fund 20, $5,000 scholarships each year for the next five years. HCC is expected to receive $100,000 a year in order to fund the scholarships with any remaining grants funds to pay for expenses incurred through field trips, conferences, educational necessities and even to compensate guest speakers. The National Science Foundation decided to award such a hefty grant for the education of the potential leaders of tomorrow’s STEM fields because, “the S-STEM program emphasizes the importance of recruiting students to STEM disciplines, mentoring and supporting students through degree completion, and partnering with employers to facilitate student career placement in the STEM workforce,” according to the NSF program description. “This is going to be a significant help to students in an area where there is significant need.” said HCC president Bill Messner. “Historically, one of the challenges has been that students don’t always think of careers of careers in STEM,” said Messner. “Many students haven’t had good experiences in science and math in high school – particularly math – so they may right away cross that off as an option for themselves in college. So, these scholarships will help raise the visibility of STEM areas and play an important part in a broader, ore focused and more intentional approach to making STEM options available to more students at HCC.” Student of HCC eligible for the S-STEM scholarships may awarded as soon as the Fall 2015 semester!