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Scholarship program celebrates success

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Scholarship program celebrates success

November is traditionally a month of get-togethers and celebrations, though not all are holiday-related. Some gatherings, like the one hosted by University of Missouri Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Gregory Triplett, are meant to celebrate accomplishment and success.

On Dec. 8, Triplett will treat the eight scholars in electrical and computer engineering (ECE) IncREaCE program -including the program’s first two graduates – to dinner at a local restaurant in recognition of a job well done.

IncREaCE is a program aimed at strengthening enrollment and retention rates in ECE. Triplett’s work on a National Science Foundation (NSF) panel charged with reviewing other university’s scholarship programs inspired him to develop a program for MU. He wrote a grant to the foundation and was awarded nearly $520,000 for a five-year program to provide two-year scholarships, peer mentoring, tutoring and study tools for qualifying freshmen and transfer students.

“Basically, this program helps ECE students graduate; it produces more engineers,” said Triplett. “The criteria are simple. We’re looking for students who are U.S. citizens with academic talent, and who have unmet need, as determined by FAFSA.”

Women and underrepresented groups are especially targeted, but anyone who meets the criteria is welcome to apply.

Trent Todd, a freshman from Kirksville, Mo. who is an IncREaCE scholarship recipient, decided to study electrical engineering after working with the wiring and electricity on remote control truck he refurbished for a high school physics class. He also worked for his school’s IT department during the summer.

Todd found out about the program from a mailing he received from Triplett. In addition to the financial support he receives, he is appreciative of the support and tutoring the program provides.

“IncREaCE is great,” Todd said. “Dr. Triplett has regular meetings where he gets all of the recipients together to check up on us and make sure everything is going well. He really cares about us and wants us to graduate at the tops of our classes.”

Graduating IncREaCE scholars are Andrew Bowlen and Matthew Milligan. Bolan, from Carrolton, Mo., is getting his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, with a minor in math. Originally from Nixa, Mo., Milligan is graduating Summa Cum Laude, getting a double bachelor’s in electrical and computer engineering with a double minor in math and computer science.

“This has really allowed me to understand student needs,” said Triplett. “I will continue this effort to help students, no matter what their situations. The impact of sholarship assistance is immeasurable.”

For more information about IncREaCE, visit the program’s web page at http://increase.missouri.edu, or email Triplett at triplettg@missouri.edu.

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