2010 Regina Stanback Stroud Award

2010 Winner

Nicholas Arnold, Santa Barbara City College

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.—April 15, 2010—The Academic Senate is proudly conferring the 2010 Stanback Stroud Diversity Award on Nicholas Arnold, a professor of Engineering at Santa Barbara City College and an advocate for supporting and guiding a more diverse student body through Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). Past President Regina Stanback Stroud (1993-95) will present Nicholas Arnold with the Diversity Award at the Academic Senate for California Community College’s annual Spring Plenary Session.

Nicholas Arnold has played an essential role in the initiation of an array of programs and grant-funded projects geared specifically toward the success of underrepresented students in the STEM fields. He has drafted pivotal grants that brought the Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) Program to his college. MESA helps students excel at both community colleges and four-year universities; national recognition has substantiated its achievements. Furthermore, Arnold has also started one of the first official Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) undergraduate clubs in the country. SACNAS serves to increase the number of disadvantaged students who achieve advanced degrees in science, mathematics, and engineering. Arnold is devoted to excellence and such efforts are exemplified through his actions and his commitment to reaching and engaging a diverse student population in STEM disciplines.

“Through his passion for engineering, mastery of teaching, and understanding of student lives, our candidate affords historically underrepresented community college learners the opportunity to discover and explore the STEM fields, which is for many, the start of a rewarding career and a fulfilling life,” said Director of Campus Diversity, Diane Rodriguez-Kiino, in her letter of support for Arnold.

Arnold routinely attends meetings and conferences that focus specifically on diversifying every aspect of academic life. Diversity is a cornerstone in his career; he works tirelessly to pique the interest of diverse undergraduate learners and hook them into STEM fields via mentoring and community building. And although technologically gifted and analytical, Arnold is also caring and extroverted, naturally drawing students to him as both an academic and a mentor.

“My teaching techniques, creations of innovative programs, involvement and leadership in those programs, designing new and supportive classes... and speaking out to other faculty and administrators about the need to increase diversity are only some strategies I employ in pursuit of equity and equality in the STEM fields,” said Arnold.

Arnold has enriched the lives of each of his students at Santa Barbara City College. He continuously searches for new ways to bolster underrepresented student enrollment and engagement in higher education. Arnold epitomizes the notion that diversity in academia can be realized across the spectrum of student learning.

A former student affirms Arnold’s work in saying, “Right now, as I apply to graduate programs, I recognize that I probably would never have done so if not for [Arnold’s] nurturing and dedication. My wish is that more people will know what a kind and generous person [he] is and will recognize him for his contributions to his community and to his college.”