The National Science Foundation (NSF) supports STARS through its Broadening Participation in Computing Alliance (BPC-A) program. The STARS Computing Corps is a national alliance with a mission to broaden participation of underrepresented groups in computing within institutions of higher education. In particular, STARS aims to increase computing persistence and promote career advancement for undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty, with a focus on addressing systemic and social barriers faced by those from underrepresented groups in computing.
To meet our goals, STARS strategies are centered on:
- building capacity
- igniting action
- fostering community
for broadening participation in computing research and practice. These strategies are realized through STARS programs and community convenings, with outcomes that impact individual students, faculty, and alumni as well as organizations.
How We Roll
The STARS Computing Corps operates as a community of practice that includes institutions of higher education, working and learning together to develop student and faculty leadership and resources for broadening participation of underrepresented groups in computing. Our flagship STARS Student Leadership Corps program has engaged college students and faculty from 53 colleges and universities in projects designed to promote persistence and career advancement in computing, through connecting computing to community and societal impacts; reinforcing computing knowledge through teaching and practice; developing professional, entrepreneurial, and creative skills, and developing a network of computing professionals with a shared commitment to diversity, equity, and computing.
A previous study shows that STARS college student members have positive gains in GPA, self-efficacy, computing identity, and commitment to computing, with enhanced outcomes for students who identify as women, Black, and Hispanic/Latinx (Payton, 2016). STARS has also helped to foster an academic community centered around BPC through its annual STARS Celebration conference, which builds capacity through education and ignites action for adoption of evidence-based BPC practices, and through the annual RESPECT research conference, which advances peer-reviewed scholarship on diversity, equity, and inclusion in computing.