SCATE Center Conducts S-STEM Tech Stars Scholarship Fall 2021 Orientation
Tech Stars project contributes to the national need for well-educated scientists, mathematicians, engineers, and technicians
Students new to the Florence-Darlington Technical College (FDTC)’s S-STEM (Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Tech Stars Scholarship program participated this Fall (September 22, 2021) in a more in-depth orientation. Supported by a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant, Tech Stars allows FDTC to provide at least thirty scholarships annually to financially needy, academically talented students through the Virtual Cyber Generation Tech Stars (VCGTS) scholarship program.
The Tech Stars project contributes to the national need for well-educated scientists, mathematicians, engineers, and technicians by assisting high achieving, low-income students with demonstrated need who major in one of the three related associate degree STEM programs within FDTC's Division of Technical and General Education, such as Computer Technology/Network Systems Management, Industrial Technologies, or Engineering Technologies.
The FDTC Tech Stars’ scholarship model combines both evidence-based and innovative new practices that will close the digital divide for diverse scholars and support cohesive student cohorts to advance students' knowledge and understanding of STEM careers and the skilled technical workplace. The model faculty mentoring, a Z-Space laptop technical support, MI-FI hotspots, customized financial assistance including tuition, books and supplies, academic supports, personal coaching, and resource connections.
In an effort to help guide students to finding FDTC’s resources and on-campus support, the Tech Stars Scholarship Program Fall 2021 orientation, “Lunch and Learn” session was held on September 22, 2021, for approximate twenty Technology degree-seeking students. The session was organized so students could learn more about the Tech Star scholarship requirements, financial aid, personal responsibility, academic, and student support opportunities, résumé building, and student internship opportunities. Industry Representative Andy Little, Director, Information Systems from MUSC Health Florence Division also presented comprehensive career paths and industry expectations for incoming employment candidates.
The South Carolina Advanced Technological Education (SCATE) Center of Excellence administers the National Science Foundation’s S-STEM grant program. “There is great information sharing at our sessions,” said Rick Roberts, Managing Director, SCATE. “A lot of their questions are about how students can become and remain involved, discover opportunities to connect with employers and other students, what campus supports can they access and connections to internships. For us, the orientations help to keep the students on the proper path to guide their journey here at FDTC.” The Tech Stars’ orientation is the first step in building a cohort of students that can support and assist each other as they maneuver through the college experience.
Tech Star students who need additional information can speak individually with Mr. Roberts to review program requirements and expectations as well as how to connect with internship opportunities from local and regional industry partners.
For more information about the Tech Stars Scholarship Program, please visit www.scate.org and click on the Students tab or call us at 843-676-8547.