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NSF Opens 2017 PAESMEM Nomination Season

Posted on February 5, 2016

Open nomination period ends June 17

Nominations are now open for the 2017 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM).The deadline to submit nominations is Friday, June 17, 2016.

Eligible science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) mentors, both individuals and organizations, may self-nominate or be nominated by a colleague or friend. Nominations of non-academic organizations and small businesses working to expand STEM talent by mentoring in formal and informal settings also are encouraged.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) administers the award program on behalf of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). STEM mentoring activities in all sciences, including the biomedical sciences, are eligible for nomination.

Dr. Joan Ferrini-Mundy, assistant director of NSF’s Directorate for Education and Human Resources (EHR), said the PAESMEM nomination process achieves many goals. She said NSF is casting a wider net this nomination season to ensure all STEM mentors in the country are recognized for their contributions and to send a message that expanding STEM talent is a community effort.  

“It’s important to have a robust pool of nominations because that’s really the best way that NSF can get a national snapshot of all of the great work that’s going on in mentoring. Not everyone will win, of course, but we really can best shape our programs when we have a good understanding of what the great ideas are, where people are having success, and how well they’re doing,” Ferrini-Mundy said.

Dr. Sylvia James, director of the Division of Human Resource and Development (HRD) at NSF, reiterated the goal of expanding the nomination pool beyond academia. 

“We are working to ensure that we receive nominations from all sectors,” James said. “While the academic community is familiar with NSF and PAESMEM, we also encourage nominations from individuals and organizations in other sectors that provide excellent examples of mentoring. So, we’ve increased the outreach. Webinars are being offered to help people navigate the system for nominating. We want to make sure we’re reaching professional organizations, nonprofits, and elsewhere. These sectors may not have been as well represented in previous pools of nominees and awardees,” James said.

The nomination solicitation is available here.

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