Montana Tech of
The University of Montana
2007 Diversity Action Plan
- Montana Tech’s Technical Outreach’s current activities that improve the campus environment for minority students include the following 4 areas: (1) securing external funding for continuing both STEP and the Annual Tour of Nations programs, hosting summer workshops for local elementary students that includes Native American Cultural Awareness in the curriculum; (2) assisting Chief Dull Knife College with securing an Upward Bound program to serve 60 Northern Cheyenne students; (3) establishing an Educational Talent Search program to serve 800 middle school students in Southwest Montana with college preparation activities; and (4) expanding the Montana Tech Upward Bound program to serve 10 additional low income high schools (60 students per year) in Montana. Special efforts to recruit and accept Native American and other minority students are made within the Educational Talent Search and Upward Bound programs.
- Montana Tech cooperated with UM-M to submit a grant to the Alfred P Sloan Foundation in support of Native Indian Masters students. Up to 5 Native Indian graduate students in science and/or engineering will be funded over the next 3 years.
- The campus general education committee will determine the best way for Montana Tech to meet the requirements of MCA 20-1-501. They will work cooperatively with Montana tribes to include information specific to the cultural heritage and contemporary contributions of American Indians, with particular emphasis on Montana Indian tribal groups and governments.
- The campus strategic plan, Minority and Gender Equity Achievement Plan, and the Montana Tech Student and Institutional Outcomes are the guiding documents for the campus. Diversity is directly addressed in the strategic plan action item of improving the diversity of faculty and staff to contribute to the goal of sustaining and enhancing the quality of all programs at Montana Tech. Diversity of the student body is a defined outcome of the Montana Tech Student and Institutional Outcomes. The Minority and Gender Equity Plan will be updated this fall. These guiding documents are accessed each year, and action agenda items are established to reach the goal determined by the respective oversight committees.
- The Succeeding Students in Engineering Programs (STEP), our support program for underrepresented students, is housed in the Technical Outreach Department at Montana Tech. This structure ensures the program will be able to sustain through staff changes.
- Montana Tech continues to actively recruit American Indian students throughout the state of Montana. This is accomplished by organizing and supporting undergraduate Native American students to tour the state giving recruitment/outreach presentations in many high schools located on the Indian Reservations located in Montana. The Technical Outreach Department secured a mini-grant with the Reintegrating Youth Offenders facility in Galen, MT, which houses youth offenders until they are prepared to transfer back into society. The grant supports tutoring and motivational workshops that increase the likelihood of these individuals seeking post secondary education upon reintegration. Of the youth offenders housed at RYO. 99% are Native American.
- Montana Tech received 2 National Science Foundation grants to increase the number of under-represented students seeking degrees in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) disciplines. The funds are used primarily for direct student aid through scholarships valued at over $6,000 per year, renewable for five years. The scholarship program has allowed the campus to expand and improve upon outreach efforts to Native American populations via the state TRIO associations, through a partnership with GEAR UP, and by attending tribal college career fairs.
- Baccalaureate graduation rates for Native Americans and other minorities has consistently remained between 1 and 3% of all degrees awarded, and because enrollment data indicates that minorities have made up between 1 and 3% of all students at MT Tech, it is logical to reason that the minority students who attend Montana Tech are graduating at the same success rate of their white peers.
- Montana Tech awards 13-17 native waivers per year that qualify based on the eligibility criteria. Approximately 17-20 students apply, but not all qualify based on residency and/or the right degree of Indian blood. To qualify, students must demonstrate need based on filing the federal financial aid application. We have a diverse group of Native American students from around the State of Montana with many tribal affiliations - 60% males and 40% female.
- All students who received the Indian Fee Waiver at Montana Tech were reliant on that waiver for their enrollment. The fee waiver is critical in recruitment and retention of students.
- Tech has faculty from India, Turkey, China, Kyrgyzstan, and the Philippines. Our number of female faculty members is increasing. It is our goal to hire qualified women into faculty positions that have been predominately male.
- Tech employs staff of Native American decent and from various countries such as India, Germany, China, Poland, Turkey and Canada. Many of these positions are permanent.
- Montana Tech has no faculty with expertise in Indian languages. Thus, Montana Tech will work with qualified University of Montana-Missoula faculty to help determine potential credit for Native American students requesting credit for language proficiency. If faculty recommends credit, the credit will be applicable to the humanities requirement of the general education core.
- In celebration of American Indian Heritage Day, Steve Small Salmon, Tribal Elder of the Salish Kootenai Tribe, was invited to campus the past 3 years, to discuss the dances involved in a traditional Pow Wow. Dining Services offered special entrees on American Indian Heritage Days.
- Montana Tech, in celebration of United Nations Day, will host a celebration of Diversity and Culture October 24th, sponsored by ASMT and Tech’s Intercultural Communications Class.
- Collaborating Colleges....
Blackfeet Community College, Dawson Community College, Chief Dull Knife College, Fort Peck Community College, Little Big Horn College, Miles Community College, Salish-Kootenai College, Stone Child College
Transfer Agreements (guidelines) exist for the following tribal colleges, and community colleges on or near Indian reservations that serve a Native American population
Flathead Valley Community College
Dual Admission-Concurrent Application