Project Overview

Predicting Retention in STEM Degree Programs and the Scientific Workforce

Faculty Sponsor

Meg Blume-Kohout (




This project examines predictors of undergraduate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) degree completion, and gender differences in occupational choices among students with STEM degrees, using large-scale datasets.

Project #1, Financial Aid: This project will examine whether availability of merit scholarships targeted only to STEM majors increases lower-income, first-generation, or minority students' likelihood of completing a STEM degree.

Project #2, Belonging in Science: This ongoing project explores how attitudes, identities, faculty representation, peer effects, and social norms may influence both women’s persistence in STEM majors and subsequent STEM workforce participation.

This work is funded in part by Prof. Blume-Kohout’s recent National Science Foundation grant award:

Student Qualifications

Duties may include data collection and preparation, literature search and summary review, statistical programming and analysis, producing graphics for presentations, and/or manuscript writing. Math 105 or equivalent background is required; Econ 234 or coursework in quantitative social science research methods (e.g. Econ 375) and working proficiency with Stata software are preferred.

Number of Student Researchers

2-3 students

Project Length

8-10 weeks


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If you have questions, please contact Karyn Belanger (