Published on March 26, 2024 by Velester Debro, Diamond Nunnally  
STEM Network 2024

Samford University's STEM Scholars program, which provides scholarships for academically gifted transfer students committed to a career in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), proudly hosted its third annual networking event on Friday, March 15. The "Navigating Your Future in STEM” event attracted students and professionals from various educational institutions and industries. 

Students and faculty from esteemed institutions such as Lawson State Community College, Gadsden State Community College, Jefferson State Community College and Samford gathered to engage in meaningful conversations and exchange ideas throughout the day. 

Representatives from a diverse array of organizations attended the event including Regions Bank, Organogenesis, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Altec, Freshwater Land Trust, HCA Healthcare and CMC Steel. Their presence provided students with a unique opportunity to gain firsthand knowledge about various career paths within the STEM fields, how current STEM professionals started their career journeys and explore potential internship or employment opportunities. 

The event's format encouraged dynamic interactions, as students and STEM professionals engaged in dialogue within small group settings, facilitating personalized discussions and mentorship opportunities. 

Reflecting on the event's success, Betsy Dobbins, biological and environmental sciences professor and director of the STEM Scholars program, said, "We are thrilled to see the enthusiasm and engagement from both students and professionals at this year's event. It is incredibly rewarding to witness the meaningful connections forged and the invaluable insights shared, all of which are instrumental in empowering the next generation of STEM leaders." 

The event underscored Samford University's commitment to nurturing and empowering students within the STEM disciplines, equipping them with the skills, knowledge and network necessary to thrive in their future careers. 

The STEM Scholars program is partially funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. For more information about the program and upcoming events, contact STEM Coordinator Velester Debro at 

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.