The Center for Sustainable Materials Science, (CSMS), research team will be involved in activities to support the goals of the
North Dakota EPSCoR grant’s EMPOWERED-ND initiative, which stands for Emerging Programs for Workforce
Development, Outreach, Education and Diversity-North Dakota, a tightly integrated workforce development, education and
outreach and partnership program designed to ensure a continual pipeline of highly qualified individuals to meet the future
needs of the North Dakota economy.

Some of the goals identified for this EMPOWERED-ND initiative, that fall under three Project Element areas, that apply to
CSMS are shown below.


  • Build on the success of our K-12 NATURE programs by including more CSMS-related themes into NATURE
    University Summer Camp and Sunday Academy programming
  • Help to identify American Indian students interested in pursuing and eventually obtaining PhDs in STEM programs
    and who are willing to maintain contact with a Tribal College faculty member or administrator
  • Increase the participation level of women faculty in CSMS
  • Increase the number of American Indian and women role models participating in CSMS-related themes during
    NATURE University Summer Camp and Sunday Academy programming.

Education and Workforce Development

  • Increase K 12 student self-efficacy in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)
  • Increase student interest in STEM.
  • Increase student intentions to pursue a STEM major and increase higher education retention in those fields.
  • Build capacity for interdisciplinary research state-wide and initiate collaboration with partner institutions (Tribal
    Colleges and Primarily Undergraduate Institutions) and sustain these research collaborations.
  • Engage undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral researcher associates and CSMS research faculty in
    expanding research and provide educational and research opportunities to underrepresented groups and younger
    learners from other North Dakota institutions.  See the CSMS Outreach page for listings by grant year of
    Outreach carried out by CSMS students and postdoctoral researchers.

Partnership, Collaboration and Communication Objectives

  • Develop partnerships to advance the CSMS science and engineering infrastructure and translational
    research opportunities; specifically academic and industrial collaborations.
  • Establish and maintain partnerships with DoE and USDA national labs, provide for student internship at DoE and/or
    USDA labs.
  • Collaborate with North Dakota and regional industry (Minnesota, Montana and South Dakota) to identify and support
    summer internships.
  • Work on projects with the Center for Regional Climate Studies (CRCS), another center funded by this North
    Dakota EPSCoR grant.

Associated web presence for CRCS is

  • Communicate on scientific accomplishments and activities to enhance awareness of ongoing CSMS achievements
    and results (ex: educational webinets, blog posts, and news items on the CSMS website