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Faculty mentors sought for disabled students

A new program to help students with disabilities succeed in science and math is under way at WSU, and faculty are being sought to help oversee summer internships for these students.

WSU recently has become a partner in the DO-IT (disabilities, opportunities, internetworking and technology) program, which has been based at the University of Washington and supported by the National Science Foundation for about 10 years. The program will work with area high schools, colleges, outreach programs, employers and students in Eastern Washington to increase the participation of people with disabilities in science, technology, engineering and math fields.

The aim of the group is to increase the number of students with disabilities pursuing degrees in these technical programs and to provide support for them. Such support includes peer and mentor interaction, work experiences and other activities.

The program also provides educators and staff with ways to create more inclusive programs for students with disabilities, so that they can pursue education in technical fields.

This summer, the program is looking to provide paid internships for students with disabilities in WSU research laboratories. Program Director Carolyn Ashby hopes to identify students for internships and professors who will provide support for these students.

“WSU departments won’t have to pay the stipend,” said Ashby, adding that DO-IT will pick up the costs for participating faculty and departments.Faculty interested in mentoring a student this summer can contact Ashby at 335-3716 or c_ashby@wsu.edu.

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