Document Type

Article - Open Access

Publication Title

Journal of STEM Education


The Institute for STEM Education & Research

Publication Date


Abstract/ Summary

The experimental group for this study included 38 students who entered the Tech Valley Scholars (TVS) program over the course of three academic years, from 2009-10 through 2011-12. Two groups of controls were used: a randomly selected sample of STEM students who matriculated in the same time frame; and a matched sample. The TVS students and controls were compared on two primary outcome variables: graduation (or retention to senior year), and final cumulative GPA. The major findings of this study are that (1) the TVS students had better outcomes than both the randomly selected comparison group and the matched control group, (2) unmet financial need is an important risk factor for non-retention, (3) students with moderately high unmet need can be academically successful if retained, and (4) the TVS program is having a positive impact on at-risk students. Recommendations for effective and efficient allocation of scholarship funds are given and future statistical studies are recommended.