"Steering Minority Education for the 21st Century," an SC-COSMIC Conference to be held June 25

Sponsored by the South-Central Computational Science in Minority Institutions Consortium (SC-COSMIC) and the National Science Foundation, "Steering Minority Education for the 21st Century" will be held at Rice on June 25. The Association of Departments of Computer and Information Science and Engineering at Minority Universities (ADMI) will hold an associated symposium, "ADMI 98 -- Assessment and Vision," on June 26-27.

During the SC-COSMIC conference, students, faculty, and others will speak on topics of interest to minorities in the computational sciences. Topics include the Hopwood decision; the strengths and weaknesses of minority and majority institutions; easing transitions between minority situations (high school and undergraduate education) and majority situations (undergraduate education, graduate school, and the workplace); and developing Masters and Ph.D. programs at minority institutions. Suggestions and solutions will be documented in discussion groups that follow the talks, which will be forwarded to government and academic officials.

SC-COSMIC was formed in 1995 with support from the CRPC with the goals of strengthening and reforming K-16 math and science education and promoting computational science education and research. Members share their resources and expertise in curricula reform, interactive learning, multimedia materials, remote databases, and supercomputing.

CRPC Director Ken Kennedy, who led the organization of the SC-COSMIC and this conference, explained, "This conference will not only inspire a lively discussion of important issues, it will also enable minority students to experience and impact the process of policymaking."

The ADMI Assessment and Vision Symposium will feature student and faculty talks about attracting and retaining minorities in the computer sciences and involving students in research. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Judge Dickson of IBM Corporation, and Reverend Bill Lawson of Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church are scheduled to speak about the impact of the Hopwood Decision. Other topics slated for discussion include establishing facilities, culturally sensitive curricula, and models of education for minority students; improving the research and teaching environment; enhancing faculty opportunities; and developing partnerships with major research institutions.

ADMI was established in 1989 as a national organization dedicated to exploring and providing remedies to the educational issues in computer/information science and computer engineering that confront minority institutions of higher education.

To register for the SC-COSMIC and ADMI events, contact Theresa Chatman, CRPC Manager of Outreach Programs, at 713-285-5180 or tlc@rice.edu. More information about SC-COSMIC is available at http://www.crpc.rice.edu/CRPC/SC-COSMIC/.

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