Hope scholarship grants are a very popular way to get money for a college education.
But now, a national scholarship fund for women and girls is being formed, thanks to a partnership between the Women’s Resource Center, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and Science, and the University of California, Berkeley.
Hope scholarships were established in 1970 as a way to support low-income women and children who might otherwise not be able to attend college.
Today, more than half of all women who attend college are women and they earn more than $150,000 annually, according to the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank.
And in recent years, the Women in Mathematics and Statistics Association (WIMSA), a women’s group that represents many women in mathematics, math and science, has grown in number.
The WIMSA, which has been around for more than a decade, has been pushing for a national funding program for women in math and physics, which would be the first for women to receive an endowed professorship.
“We believe the federal government should invest in women in physics and mathematics, and we want to give those women a chance to have their voices heard,” WIMS president and CEO Rebecca Reiman said in a statement.
“This partnership with the Women and Mathematics Council of Berkeley is the next logical step for WIMSS, and hopefully the next step for the country.”
In 2018, the WIMSEA received $1.1 million from the federal Department of Education to support the WMSB program, which seeks to provide support to women in STEM fields through grants, scholarships, internships and technical support.
“It’s a great opportunity to give a voice to women that are out there in the STEM fields,” WimsSA president and chief executive Michelle Gifford said.
“The WIMPS and the WMMS are going to be the ones getting paid to come to Berkeley and work with the Berkeley Women’s Scholarship.”
Berkeley has hosted the first Hope scholarship at the University’s Center for Mathematical and Mathematical Sciences, and in 2018, a Hope scholarship grant was awarded to four-year student Emily Zalman.
The scholarship is for her to complete an undergraduate math course and then to participate in a two-year graduate program.
Emily Zaltman, four-time WIMPA winner and Berkeley mathematics and physics student, speaks at a rally for the Women of the World Summit at UC Berkeley on Sept. 22, 2019.
“I’m excited about getting a chance at the Berkeley Mathematics and Physics Department, which is very supportive of women,” Zaltmann said.
The four-term students from Berkeley will take part in a research fellowship to study mathematical concepts and methods for the first time at Berkeley.
“My intention is to pursue my bachelor’s degree, then to get a Ph.
D.,” Zalteman said.
But as part of the research, the students will also work with undergraduate students from the University and in the Berkeley physics department.
“You will learn about the theory and applications of linear algebra, and you will learn how to develop your own algorithms and code,” said Berkeley Physics undergraduate student Krista Ojeda.
“So it’s an exciting time for me to get to work with these students and hopefully get to help them to be successful in this program.”
In addition to helping students apply for grants, the Hope Scholarship will provide mentoring, networking and career development for women who are working toward an undergraduate degree.
“As a mathematician, we can learn a lot from these girls and get better at our own math and our own problems,” said Giffords, who also chairs the Berkeley Science Advisory Council and serves as vice chairwoman of the Berkeley Math and Physics Association.
“These are talented young women who want to work hard, and they have the confidence to do so.”
The Hope Scholarship is the latest in a growing number of programs that support women in the fields of math and sciences, such as the STEM Women of America.
The number of women in science, engineering and mathematics has more than tripled in the last five years.
Women now hold more than 56 percent of engineering faculty jobs, and 60 percent of the faculty members in the United States hold a doctorate degree.
In 2018 alone, more women earned a Phd.
degree than men, according, and more women than men were accepted into PhD programs.
The numbers of women graduating with a bachelor’s or higher degree have also grown dramatically in recent decades, and this is no different, according a 2017 report by the Pew Research Center.
Women were about one-third of the students enrolled in the University during the 2014-2017 academic year, and now the number is one-fifth.
Women made up more than two-thirds of undergraduate enrollment at UCB in 2017, up from about 60 percent in 2010.
“When you see women make up such a significant share of students in STEM disciplines, you can imagine how this impact will continue,” said Jennifer Durb