The Precise Advanced Technologies and Health Systems for Underserved Populations (PATHS-UP) Engineering Research Center (ERC) was funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2017. The goal of all NSF-ERC funded programs is to integrate engineering research and education with technological innovation to transform national prosperity, health and security.
The specific vision of our PATHS-UP ERC is to change the paradigm for the health of underserved populations by developing revolutionary and cost-effective technologies and systems at the point-of-care. The initial PATHS-UP technologies and systems are designed to help with chronic diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, which are leading causes of morbidity and mortality world-wide. Chronic diseases are particularly devastating in underserved communities in the United States where they are contracted at a higher rate than the national average. In these underserved communities, chronic diseases are increasingly a major cause of disability, even for younger people, and lead to poor quality of life and high health care expenditures. Thus, the burden of chronic disease is a grand challenge that requires cost-effective technologies to reduce mortality rates, emergency room visits and hospitalizations, which disproportionately drive up healthcare costs. Technologies are also needed to help prevent or delay the disease, reducing the incidence of secondary complications and enhancing life quality.
Thus, to accomplish our vision, the PATHS-UP mission is 1) to engineer transformative, robust, and affordable, technologies and systems to improve healthcare access, enhance the quality of service and life, and reduce the cost of healthcare in underserved populations and 2) to recruit and educate a diverse group of scientists and engineers who are ready to lead the future in developing enabling technologies to improve health in underserved communities.
The PATHS-UP ERC team is led by Texas A&M University, with partners from the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station, the University of California at Los Angeles, Florida International University and Rice University, and includes assessment experts from the Arizona State University.
The PATHS-UP Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program offers teachers a 3-week summer residential engineering research experience on the Texas A&M University College Station campus, followed by a 3-week remote research opportunity. Lodging, meals, and travel expenses are included during the summer residential experience. The main purpose of the RET program is to bring discovery research to teachers who can then share their research experiences and disseminate their lesson plans to their colleagues and peers. Through teachers, we can target students and encourage them to seek careers in STEM. The program affords teachers the opportunity to engage in leading edge research in biomedical engineering.
- Teacher interns must be a:
- Current U.S. Citizen or permanent resident
- K-12 math, science, computer science, or CTE teacher in the Rio Grande Valley.
- Teacher interns must:
- Provide a personal statement to include how participation in PATHS-UP will enhance your professional development and impact your students’ experiences
- Submit a recommendation form by the applicant’s principal or department head
- Offer teachers and students current research experiences in engineering and health technologies
- Provide an experience that integrates science, technology, engineering, and mathematics
- enhance laboratory skills and research techniques
- reinforce educational research in inquiry, learning theory, and psychology
- introduce teachers and students to careers in engineering and health technologies
- promote a culture of inclusion and diversity
Program Requirements for Teacher Interns
- Participate in all scheduled research periods, assignments and virtual meetings
- Create and submit lesson/project based on your research experience
- Develop and produce a virtual presentation specific to your project
Optional Programs for Teacher Interns
- Attend 4 PATHS-UP Young Scholar Meetings (2 in Fall, 2 in Spring)
- Participate in Young Scholars Invent (1.5 day competition)
- Present at STEM Conference
June 12 – June 30, 2023::
Research at Texas A&M University
July 10 – July 28, 2023:
Remote Lesson/Project Development
Academic Year 23-24:
- Attend 4 PATHS-UP Meetings (1 hour meetings)
- Participate in Young Scholars Invent
$6,000 in stipends will be awarded upon completion of the following milestones:
Meals and Travel
June 12, 2023
Classroom Supplies Budget
June 12, 2023
Complete Summer Program
July 28, 2023
By end of academic year ’23-’24
Young Scholars Club
Optional – 2 meetings in Fall, 2 meetings in Spring
Young Scholars Invent
Optional – 1.5 day in Spring
Share Lesson Plan
By end of academic year ’24-’25
For additional questions, please contact a PATHS-UP Program Administrator.