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7 SELECTION CRITERIA SELECTION OF STUDENTS The primary selection point will be in the student's senior year of high school concurrent with application to college, and decisions will be made by each individual consortium. Students will be selected based on a portfolio including a student statement of career goals, letters of recommendation, transcripts, and SAT or ACT test scores. All students should have completed four years of college preparatory mathematics in high school through precalculus, three years of science, and four years of English, earning a 3.2 GPA or higher in those courses. In addition' it is required that students be enrolled in precalculus or calculus during their senior year of high school. We suggest a minimum Il00 SAT score (old scale) or equivalent ACT score. Although these criteria are fairly specific, it will be important for those involved in the selection process to exercise flexibility and creativity in reviewing student credentials. Students may be lacking in one part of their portfolio but more than accommodate for it in another area. · . · ~ · ~ Personal interviews conducted wherever possible. should be In the event that it is not possible to arrange a campus visit for prospective students, interviews should be set up with faculty, staff, or perhaps alumni. The program should make provision for "late bloomers," for students who wish to enter from other higher education institutions or programs? and for those who simply did not know about the scholars program as high school seniors. Furthermore, students should be permitted to take a leave of absence, not to exceed one year, from the program and be allowed to return, conditional upon the availability of space and funding. Undergraduate students must maintain a 3.2 GPA in science and mathematics course work and otherwise maintain satisfactory academic progress. Furthermore, students should be required to sign a yearly, renewable contract in which they declare their intent and commitment to pursue advanced (doctoral) study in science and engineering. Students will be required to apply to graduate school through the normal admissions process and, if accepted, will be eligible to continue as a National Scholar if they state their intention to seek a doctoral degree. That the student is a National Scholar, however, will not guarantee admission. Admissions decisions will remain with the graduate department.
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26 SELECTION OF CONSORTIA The National Scholars Coordinating Council, in consultation with NASA (and other pertinent program sponsors), should issue a Request for Proposals. Applications could originate from either the graduate or undergraduate institution, or institutions could submit a joint application, so long as there is real and demonstrable involvement on the part of both institutions in the program. The overdying criterion for evaluating consortium applicants is the likelihood of success in advancing the participation of minorities in science and engineering at the cloctoral level. The proposed consortium should state its objectives and provide evidence that indicates effective implementation of the proposed educational elements; the contributions of the proposed partners in the consortium; institutional commitment; a record of accomplishment in educating minority students and/or evidence of proposed commitment that would suggest a strong likelihood of future success; and a high quality academic program. · , . .- ~ An institution should not be disqualified from seeking to implement a National Scholars consortium because of the lack of previous accomplishments. Indeed, such committed institutions should be encouraged as a means of expanding the access of minority youth to high quality educational programs and institutions. At the same time? institutions with a history of serving minority students must demonstrate how a consortium would expand and improve contributions to the development of minority doctoral scientists and engineers. We believe that a National Scholars Program should be envisaged, at a minimum, as a 15-year commitment. The initial years will be a learning experience, during which time each consortium will refine its strategies and objectives. Furthermore, it will take a minimum of nine years for a student who is admitted as a college freshman scholar to complete his or her undergraduate and doctoral study. The program should provide stability in consortium funding. A situation to be avoided is one in which a consortium has received funding for several years? after which a retrospective evaluation is undertaken.
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