Vías hacia la Excelencia Académica (Pathways to Excellence)

In 2016, Cal Poly Humboldt applied for and was awarded a $3.9 million grant by the U.S. Department of Education’s Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI)- Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics (STEM) and Articulation Program.[1] Humboldt will receive the grant award over five academic years, 2016-17 through 2020-2021.

The program is intended to increase the number of Hispanic [2] and/or low-income [3] students attaining degrees in the fields of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM); and to develop model transfer and articulation agreements between two-year and four-year institutions in such fields.

This website provides an overview of the grant's four components (below), a timeline of proposed activities, plus related documents and resources. Check back periodically for updates on progress and outcomes.

Place-Based Learning Communities

Collecting Water Samples

Develop and launch place-based learning communities for freshmen in all science and engineering majors.

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Expanded Tutoring Services

Tutoring services at the Learning Center

Enhance services for gateway STEM courses integrated into the new Humboldt
Learning Center.

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Reformed Developmental Math Instruction

Math on the quad

Expedite the path to college-level math courses required for STEM majors.

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New Pathways for Transfer Students


Forge relationships with two-year institutions to streamline transfer pathways into Humboldt science disciplines.

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Nicolas Sanchez in the field

Graduation Initiative 2025

The HSI STEM work aligns with the goals Humboldt’s Graduation Initiative 2025 – except we aim to achieve some outcomes for STEM students well before 2025.  Specifically, we aim to achieve the following:

  1. Increase the six-year graduation rate for first-time STEM students to 56 percent by 2021. (currently 54%)
  2. Increase the four-year graduation rate for first-time STEM students 30 percent by 2023. (currently 19.6%)
  3. Increase the four-year graduation rate for STEM transfer students to 79 percent by 2023. (currently 71.6%)
  4. Increase the two-year graduation rate for transfer STEM students to 38 percent by 2025. (currently 19.8%)
  5. Eliminate equity gaps for traditionally underrepresented students, first-generation students, and low-income students in STEM by 2025. (for current data, see equity gaps)

We share #1-5 with GI 2025, and we also add two of our own:

  1. Increase 1st-year retention at Humboldt for STEM students to 80% by 2022. (currently 71.1%)
  2. Increase 1st-year retention in STEM specifically to 75% by 2022. (currently 71.0%)

If you have questions or feedback about the HSI STEM grant or components of the program, please email hsistem@humboldt.edu.