The IDEA Scholars program is building a community of engineering scholars at the Jacobs School. The program offers support and
achievement opportunities, and entering undergraduates are encouraged to apply. Students have quarterly meetings and participate in mentoring
and tutoring. They experience Summer PrEP, take classes together, and will remain engaged through TIP, Global TIES, the Gordon Engineering
Leadership Center and other programs. One goal is a 70 percent graduation rate. Kayse Sheppard and Antonio Gonzalez are among the first
cohort of IDEA Scholars.
Kayse Sheppard dreams of
designing rides for Disney amusement
parks. But when she first enrolled at
the Jacobs School of Engineering,
she worried about handling the
school's rigorous curriculum and
about making new friends. Her
worries began to fade after she earned
a spot as an IDEA Scholar and attended the Summer PrEP
program, where she made friends and gained skills for thriving
in a challenging engineering education environment. Kayse, a
17-year-old Native American and Hispanic student, also takes
part in the JUMP mentoring program and has already begun
giving back: she recently took part in an engineering outreach
program at a local middle school.
Antonio "AJ" Gonzalez
Antonio "AJ" Gonzalez wants to come up
with technology that uses renewable resources
to power the world. He also is a midshipman
in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and attends
UC San Diego on a Naval ROTC scholarship.
AJ, 19, is an IDEA Scholar. He chose UC San
Diego for its top environmental engineering
research and because of the city's military
bases. As the son of a single mother coming from a low-performing
high school, he was worried about doing well in college. The PrEP
program changed his mindset. He said he now knows he will succeed.