INRSEP + Diversity in STEM
Cal Poly Humboldt's Indian Natural Resources, Science and Engineering Program (INRSEP) + Diversity in STEM provides academic and research support services to first generation, low income, and historically underrepresented students in STEM disciplines with a focus on American Indian and Indigenous students. We strive to work as partners with local tribal communities to learn from their wisdom and contribute to their goals.
Our mission is to improve STEM fields by empowering our students to become leaders who give back to their communities, society, and future generations while strengthening connections with their heritage and culture.
INRSEP was originally founded as the Native American Career Education in Natural Resources (NACENR) program in 1972. Its mission was to locate and train American Indian students for professional resource management positions either within American Indian communities, or in federal, state and private resource management careers. In 1991, the mission and programming of NACENR expanded and evolved into the Indian Natural Resources, Science and Engineering Program (INRSEP). Over the years, INRSEP expanded its mission to serve all underrepresented students pursuing degrees in the STEM disciplines, but the vision and methods of the student support program remained rooted in the integration of indigenous peoples’ knowledge with the mainstream approach to science. The program has been rebranded as INRSEP + Diversity in STEM.
INRSEP + Diversity in STEM oversees the grant-funded California State University Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (CSU-LSAMP@Cal Poly Humboldt) program, and supports other similarly purposed programs and campus initiatives. INRSEP+ Diversity in STEM is a key component of Humboldt’s many initiatives to support retention and academic excellence.
INRSEP+ is grounded in a holistic approach to STEM that accommodates diverse approaches to the natural world and draws from the traditional knowledge of Indigenous peoples. We blend community and professional engagement with academic advising and holistic mentorship by providing bridges to key campus resources, helping to foster student-faculty connections, and encouraging students to consider their pathways after graduation. We serve students by connecting them to research opportunities, providing academic and career counseling, assisting with entrance into graduate programs, and fostering an inclusive and supportive learning community within the INRSEP+ house.