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SCS Part of Groundbreaking Initiative To Broaden Access to STEM Education by CMU, Rales Foundation


SCS will take part in the CMU Rales Fellows Program, a transformative initiative announced by CMU and the Norman and Ruth Rales Foundation to increase access to STEM graduate education and help cultivate a new generation of domestic national STEM leaders.

$150 Million Investment Aims To Eliminate Cost as Barrier to Graduate Education, Create Distinctive Ecosystem To Ensure Success

The School of Computer Science will take part in a transformative new initiative announced by Carnegie Mellon University and the Norman and Ruth Rales Foundation.

The CMU Rales Fellows Program aims to help address the Missing Millions — individuals whose personal circumstances have presented a significant obstacle to careers in the science, technology, engineering and math fields (STEM). Engaging and creating opportunities for these individuals to join the STEM professions is a priority for the nation's economic prosperity, security and global competitiveness.

The fellows program will increase access to STEM graduate education and help cultivate a new generation of domestic national STEM leaders. At its core, the program will eliminate cost as a barrier to select master's degree and Ph.D. programs for students from underresourced and underrepresented backgrounds, including first-generation students, by providing full tuition and a stipend. It also will support students through a distinctive, holistic ecosystem of developmental and networking opportunities that will benefit fellows both during their time at CMU and as they advance in their careers.


The Rales Foundation gift will provide an endowment of $110 million to support the program, and CMU has committed a further $30 million in endowed funds. The two organizations also are jointly establishing a $10 million fund to support the program's developmental years. The first cohort of students will enroll in fall 2024; at steady state, the CMU Rales Fellows Program is expected each year to underwrite 86 graduate students in STEM fields in perpetuity, educating thousands of research and industry leaders in the coming decades.

The fellows program initially will be open to students pursuing select graduate degrees in SCS, the College of Engineering, Mellon College of Science, Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and Neuroscience Institute. Eventually, the program will be open to all of CMU's graduate STEM programs.

More information about the CMU Rales Fellows Program is available on the university's news website.


By Brian Thornton
Wednesday, February 22, 2023