UAA Chancellor is appointed Chair of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission
President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts
Frances Ulmer, Appointee for Chair, Arctic Research Commission
Fran Ulmer is Chancellor of the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA), Alaska’s largest public university. Prior to her appointment as Chancellor in 2007, Ms. Ulmer was a Distinguished Visiting Professor of Public Policy and Director of the Institute of Social and Economic Research at UAA. Ms. Ulmer also served as an elected official for 18 years as the mayor of Juneau, as a state representative and as Lieutenant Governor of Alaska. As a state legislator, Ms. Ulmer served as a member on the Special Committee on the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Claims Settlement. In addition, she was the first Chair of the Alaska Coastal Policy Council, was a member of Governor Tony Knowles’ Alaska Highway Natural Gas Policy Council and served for more than 10 years on the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission. Ms. Ulmer also served as Director of Policy Development for the State of Alaska. At the national level, Ms. Ulmer served as a member of the Federal Communications Commission's State and Local Advisory Committee, the Federal Elections Commission's State Advisory Committee and co-chaired the National Academies of Science’s Committee on State Voter Registration Databases. Ms. Ulmer was also appointed a member of the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling by President Obama in June 2010. She previously was a member of the Aspen Institute's Commission on Arctic Climate Change and held Board positions with the Alaska Nature Conservancy, the National Parks Conservation Association, and the Union of Concerned Scientists. Ms. Ulmer earned a J.D. cum laude from the University of Wisconsin Law School and has been a Fellow at the Institute of Politics at the Kennedy School of Government.
The entire press release is available at this link:
Innovative Program Promotes Science and Mentorship in Alaska
The National Science Foundation provides funding support for the ANSEP program.
"Is America losing its edge?" is a troubling question for the country. While the U.S. share of the world's science and engineering graduates is declining rapidly, NSF continues to address this growing problem though several programs. One such program is the Alaska Native Science & Engineering Program (ANSEP). Using a longitudinal model of mentoring students from middle school all the way to graduate school, ANSEP has achieved an impressive success rate of 60 to 65 percent of university recruitment and retention among Alaska Native American students. ANSEP's success comes from hands-on middle and high school outreach initiatives, rigorous summer bridging programs, focused academic learning communities, organized student cohorts, networks of peer and professional mentors, community-based learning, professional internships, and undergraduate and graduate research projects.
Herb (Ilisaurri) Schroeder of the University of Alaska is the founder and executive director of ANSEP. At the early stages of his career, he was disheartened to see that very few Alaska Native American students enrolled or succeeded in college. Determined to increase mentorship opportunities for this underrepresented group, he founded ANSEP in 1995 with one student. The program has since grown to 250 enrolled students. In 2002, ANSEP graduated its first ANSEP Alaska Native engineer. Since then, ANSEP graduated 168 Alaska Native scientists and engineers. The ANSEP mentorship network now consists of higher education institutions, industrial partners, philanthropic organizations and government agencies.
Schroeder has won several awards for his work, including the 2004 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics, Science and Engineering Mentoring. NSF has supported ANSEP through funding from the Partnerships for Innovation program. This funding helps high school students in ANSEP to build computers. The students then use those computers to learn chemistry, physics and trigonometry with educational software packages. Upon successfully completing these courses prior to graduation, the students earn the right to keep the computers. Once the students from middle or high school enter in this program, they remain with the network until they graduate from the university, thereby benefitting from the ANSEP support programs that help ensure their success at college.