FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - The National Institutes of Health has awarded Coconino Community College, in partnership with Northern Arizona University and Diné College, a $1 million grant through the federal Bridges to Baccalaureate program.
This is the first time CCC and NAU have partnered to work on a research-related grant. The awarding of the grant is another example of the close working relationship the two institutions have formed over the past several years.
"Working in collaboration with our NAU partners has been an exciting opportunity for us," said Dr. Ingrid Lee, CCC's Dean of Arts and Sciences. "This grant encourages our underrepresented student population to become scientists, addressing a nationwide initiative."
Successful collaborations with NAU include the CCC2NAU program, which started in 2008 and other projects that have followed such as the library merger, reverse transfer program, faculty sharing and many other opportunities the two institutions have seized to leverage resources to benefit students.
The NIH grant, which will be awarded over a five-year period, is designed to help students bridge the transition from a two-year institution to a four-year institution, with the ultimate goal of students graduating with their bachelor's degree. The grant will fund a summer research program at NAU for CCC and Diné College students.
The focus at CCC will be on getting Native American students interested in biomedical health science, said Dr. Jani Ingram, an Associate Professor of Analytical and Environment Chemistry at NAU. She also serves as the Bridges director.
Eight students from CCC and Diné College will be chosen to participate in the summer 2013 research program, which will partner the students in a health science research group at NAU.
"The student will work alongside the faculty member and learn about the different techniques of research," Ingram said. "They will be exposed to different areas of health science as well as have opportunities to explore different interests."
At the end of the summer, the students will present their work before a research poster session and also be given the opportunity to attend educational advancement conferences such as the Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science conference.