Texas Tech University

South Plains Math Fellows


From 2014 to 2019, the National Science Foundation named Texas Tech University (TTU) with partnering institutions Midland College (MC), Odessa College (OC) and Mesalands Community College (MCC) as recipients of an S-STEM award, the South Plains Mathematics Fellowship program (Award no. 1356604). The South Plains Mathematics Fellows (SPMF) program provided for academically talented students from underrepresented, low-income families to receive scholarships for undergraduate study leading to a degree in mathematics. In addition to the standard coursework, SPMF scholars had a support system designed specifically to enhance their academic experiences and ensure retention and success. Over the five-year life of the program, students each received scholarships of up to $10,000 per year. Some were recruited as freshmen at TTU while others were recruited as freshmen at MC, OC and MCC and transferred to TTU for their junior and senior years of the program. The scholarships provided funds for tuition, living expenses, and other costs associated with collegiate studies.

The program provided the following features/resources to help students successfully navigate the challenges of completing a STEM program degree:

  • Interdisciplinary Freshman Seminars and Interventions
  • Sophomore Year Discovery Activity Experiences
    • Cohort Bridge Program: Sophomore to Junior
  • Junior Year Coursework and Research Experiences
  • Senior Year Professional Development Seminar

Accompanying the above activities, the program emphasized individual and group mentoring, financial counseling and other support services.

Our goal was to serve the needs of students from the South Plains wishing to engage in mathematics. New courses and projects enriched the learning experiences and knowledge of the students. They experienced the utility of mathematics as they develop and analyze models for applications.

Eligibility Requirements

In order for students to qualify for the program, they needed to:

  1. Be citizens of the United States, nationals of the United States (as defined in section 101(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act), aliens admitted as refugees under section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, or aliens lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence
  2. Be accepted or enrolled as a full-time student at OC, MCC, MC, or TTU in a program leading to an associate or baccalaureate degree in mathematics for each term the scholarship is received
  3. Demonstrate academic ability or potential (students with a 3.0 STEM GPA and 24 on the ACT receive favorable consideration)
  4. And demonstrate financial need (as determined by FAFSA)

Students who met these requirements were encouraged to apply to the program via an online application. Letters of Recommendation were sent to Dr. Raegan Higgins.

Department of Mathematics & Statistics