Today, Congressman Charlie Crist (D-St. Petersburg) visited St. Petersburg College's Midtown Center to announce a $1.5 million federal grant award for the Tampa Bay Bridge to the Baccalaureate (TB-B2B) program, helping increase diversity in STEM academic degree programs as well as the STEM workforce. St. Petersburg College serves as the lead institution for the project that aims to increase the number of minority students transferring into four-year baccalaureate STEM programs by 50 percent with the support of this three-year National Science Foundation grant.
"I am so proud of St. Petersburg College's efforts to diversify the STEM workforce," said Rep. Crist. "This well-deserved grant will help further this important work, greatly benefiting our community and economy."
TB-B2B is a partnership between St. Petersburg College (SPC), Hillsborough Community College (HCC), and State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF). The three colleges typically see more than 400 of their minority students transfer into STEM programs at a four-year university every year.
"We are so honored to be a part of this partnership, which will give underrepresented, minority students opportunities to pursue baccalaureate degrees in STEM fields leading to high-wage jobs that can help end generational cycles of poverty," said Dr. Tonjua Williams, SPC President. "We are grateful to the National Science Foundation and our educational partners for their commitment to equity and diversity in STEM fields - a commitment that is crucial to meeting the ever-evolving needs of the 21st century workforce."