Athens State University awarded $650,000 from National Science Foundation

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ATHENS, Ala. – A nearly 200-year-old Athens institution is getting nearly $650,000 in science and math grant money to attract students and build out their STEM capabilities.

News 19 met with educators outside the Athens State University on Thursday afternoon.

“We were all very, very excited,” said Shannon Pittman, an Athens State University faculty member. “It’s going to be such an important program for our students. It’s really going to help them complete their degrees and majors. I’m very excited for our students and the programs it will let us provide to them.”

Money from the National Science Foundation is foundationally part of the bigger picture of population growth in the area.

“You know that this area is really growing in terms of the number of jobs in these fields so we’re providing a path for our students to get the degrees they’ll need to enter these jobs,” Pittman said.

Foundation money will pay for transfer students who are pursuing a bachelor of science degree in multiple fields including mathematics, computer science, information technology, biology, or chemistry.

The transfer students will receive two to four-year scholarships depending on whether or not they are taking full or part-time courses.

“It’s going to help us both recruit students and help those students complete their degree to prepare them for work or professional graduate school,” she said.

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