EDP serves as a central resource in the Dean’s Office to advise graduate diversity students. EDP guides students through the university bureaucracy, advising them on requirements, policies, programs, and procedures. EDP advising facilitates the integration of diversity students into the academic departmental culture. For example, diversity students are encouraged to join and learn about a formal research community of scholars, which has its informal checks and balances. EDP students, therefore, are advised to establish meaningful advisor and advisee or mentor and mentee relations. Students receive advice during critical periods when they are, for example, identifying a faculty mentor, transferring from one lab into another, securing financial aid, balancing course-load and course-selection, taking qualifying examinations, and defending the dissertation.
Oftentimes, advising services include personal support: providing emotional support, resolving disputes on behalf of students, and offering personal guidance.
Stanford EDP alumni go on to varied and successful careers. Many of the EDP graduates found start-ups and are appointed to competitive faculty positions. For example, four of the URM (underrepresented minority) tenure-line faculty in recent hires were part of EDP, and five of MIT’s URM faculty are Stanford Ph.D. alums. Others have achieved national prominence; the first woman, African American and Hispanic American women astronauts were Stanford engineering alumni, and recently an African American electrical engineering alum was inducted into the U.S. Inventor’s Hall of Fame. Furthermore, Stanford alumni have held the national president position for the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, National Society of Black Engineers, and Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers. Stanford’s AISES, SBSE/NSBE, SWE, and SSCLES/SHPE/MAES/HENACC chapters have won, several times, the best national chapter award in the last decades.
Ph.D. EDGE-STEM Retention and Advancement Program
The main purpose of the EDGE-STEM program is to recruit and retain the best and brightest Ph.D. students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics who contribute to the diversity of their disciplines and fields by providing an extra Ph.D. advisor, an extra faculty advisor and developing a community of diversity scholars. The VPGE EDGE-STEM Program will provide supplemental stipends for summer and travel commitments.
Engineering Environment of Support Seminar
The Engineering Environment of Support Seminar (E290) trains diversity students to be teaching and course assistants in one of the ten engineering departments and tutors for the School’s tutorial and learning programs. E290 has a twofold objective: to train underrepresented minority and women TAs/CAs and tutors to teach, and also to train them to serve as advisors. TAs/CAs and tutors are taught instructional pedagogy and are provided course materials that encourage them to master the process and content of tutoring and advising. Through learning tutoring and advising methods, individuals achieve success through self-motivation, role-playing, self-exploration, self-understanding and self-goal setting.
Tutorials and Qualifying Examinations
EDP provides funding for graduate students to receive tutoring in courses where they may have inadequate training or require in-depth preparation to perform at exceptional levels, e.g., qualifying examinations and writing the dissertation. Often the special needs of diversity students require EDP to augment academic resources. EDP offers tutorial grants and assigns advanced standing graduate students as tutors in order for EDP students to fill gaps in learning or course material. The EDP staff also sets-up extra Ph.D. study groups to improve pass rate for the qualifying examinations.