. "5 Program Achievements." Evaluation of NSF's Program of Grants and Vertical Integration of Research and Education in the Mathematical Sciences (VIGRE). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2009.
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Evaluation of NSF’s Program of Grants for Vertical Integration of Research and Education in the Mathematical Sciences (VIGRE)
have held a grant. These include increasing the integration of students and faculty, providing more opportunities for students, helping effect a more welcoming culture (at least in the sense of mentoring), and introducing somewhat more interdisciplinarity and outreach.
Two further avenues of research are to work (1) to quantify these changes, and (2) to assess the effects of VIGRE funding beyond the departments that received a grant. In the first instance, it seems clear that some effort should be made to survey (in some fashion) administrators, faculty, and students who are or were involved in the VIGRE program as well as students who are not involved, to ascertain their views on the importance and impact of VIGRE funding. In the latter instance, for NSF to maximize the potential of VIGRE funding, at least some of the impact must transcend those who directly receive funding. One could ask, for example:
What is the effect of VIGRE on the U.S. scientific workforce?
What is the effect on the culture of mathematical sciences higher education?
Although the second question above seems unanswerable, the committee believes that the first would be answerable if, for instance, NSF tracked and surveyed mathematicians graduating from VIGRE programs. Such a survey could give some indication of the influence of these VIGRE graduates and of those trained by them.