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The goal of the Promoting Postbaccalaureate Opportunities for Hispanic Americans (PPOHA) program is to attract Hispanic students to UTB's mathematics and computer science graduate programs and provide these students with the support they need to complete their degrees. This support includes course options (to help working students fit their studies around their work), paid internships and assistantships, and more.


  • Course Development:​ The Course Development activity focuses on both creating online materials for existing courses and creating new courses in emerging areas in Computer Science and Mathematics. In doing so, student retention and graduation will increase as well as make our students more employable.

  • Faculty Mentored Research:​ Students engaging in faculty mentored research is still an effective way to motivate students through graduation. In the Faculty Mentored Research activity students will be paired with a faculty member to be mentored through a research project during traditional one on one meetings. In addition to those meetings, students will also be a part of a research team of graduate and undergraduate students in which they will take turns leading the team. In order to demonstrate and enhance progress, research statements are perfected throughout and students attend faculty-presented workshops to assist with the writing and other technical aspects.

  • High School Outreach:​ Knowledge dissemination is arguably part of any research program. By enhancing this part of our research program we can in turn enhance our graduate program. Traditionally graduate students present among their faculty and peers, however, to make a connection between younger generations and graduate education, as well as positively impacting the local community, the high school outreach activity has graduate students presenting their ongoing work to local high school students.

  • Internship Program: Students in the Rio Grande Valley have very limited opportunities for internships in the IT field. Unlike other economically developed regions, this region does not have many high tech companies. The internship activity will seek to create opportunities for students in existing companies that have IT as a critical division. The internship program is to enable students to get first hand experience and to be more employable upon graduation. More employment opportunities will further encourage students to pursue a Master’s in Computer Science.

  • ​​Invited Speaker Series: Successful minority students are the best people to inspire the participating students of our project to pursue and retain in the advanced study of CS and math as they share the common background of being minority in STEM fields. In this project, we will invite successful minority role models, most of whom will have obtained Ph.D. degrees (or will soon) to come to the UTB campus and have dialogue with our minority students.

  • Evaluators​ and other interested parties -- browse program details​​


Rocio Gutierrez
PPOHA Grant Coordinator
Office: LHSB 2.744
Phone(956) 882-6606
Fax:(956) 882-6604

Monday - Friday
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Building: LHSB 2.744​

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