The Greater Texas Foundation of Bryan has donated three grants totaling $200,000 for scholarship endowments benefitting those who plan to teach math or science in schools throughout the state, college transfer students and first-generation students at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville.
The university is currently taking scholarship applications for students who desire to become high school science and mathematics teachers, teach science in grades 4-8 (science or dual mathematics/science programs), or professionals in math and science fields wishing to receive certification in science and mathematics through the university’s Alternate Certification Program, so that they can teach in public schools.
The largest of the three grants, $150,000, will assist SHSU’s math and science education programs.
Ten $2,000 scholarships will be available for the 2008-09 academic year. The remaining $130,000, along with $25,000 that will be secured through matching gifts to the university, will be invested and used to recruit future math and science teachers into the program at Sam Houston State.
William A. Jasper, associate professor, mathematics education, and Andrea Foster, assistant professor, curriculum and instruction, said that the funds will greatly enhance initiatives that are currently under way at Sam Houston State University to meet the state’s critical need for more math and science teachers.
“Dr. Foster and I are deeply appreciative to the Greater Texas Foundation for providing funding for scholarships for deserving students who commit to becoming science or mathematics teachers,” Jasper said.
“We are very excited about the design of this grant where an endowment has been created to offer these scholarships for many years to come,” he said.
“Texas desperately needs more highly qualified science and mathematics teachers, and these scholarships will help us recruit talented future teachers,” Jasper explained. “We are very proud of the teacher preparation program at Sam Houston State University and are happy that the Greater Texas Foundation showed faith in our program by awarding this grant to us.”
In addition, the Greater Texas Foundation Rising to the Challenge Scholarship Program has given Sam Houston State $25,000 for scholarships for students who transfer from a community college to the university.
“Sam Houston State University recognizes the increase in community college transfer students coming to the university and the need to support these students financially and academically,” Heather Crowson, vice president for enrollment management, said.
“While we have transfer student scholarships in place to support these students, as their numbers increase, the demand for scholarship support is increasing,” Crowson added.
Twenty-five incoming transfer students will be awarded $1,000 scholarships their first year.
GTF’s Generation Proud Scholarship Program has donated another $25,000 to the university for first-generation college students attending SHSU.
Traditionally, Sam Houston State University has been the college of choice for first generation students. More than half the incoming freshmen who enrolled in the university in fall 2007 were first generation college students, and approximately 60 percent of incoming transfer students were first generation students.
Although the university has implemented programs to smooth their transition and enhance their college experience, financial assistance is needed by many of these students in order to meet the increasing cost of public higher education. Sam Houston State University plans to fund 25 new first generation students at $1,000 each for their first year.
The Greater Texas Foundation has functioned as a charitable foundation since 2001. The foundation’s mission is to support excellence in education by increasing access for all Texans and improving educational quality through public-private partnerships.
For information on applying for Greater Texas Foundation scholarships at Sam Houston State University, contact William Jasper, Sam Houston State University Department of Mathematics, at 936.294.1575.
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