NSF INCLUDES: South East Alliance for Persons with Disabilities in STEM

Auburn University receives $10 million in NSF funding to create an INCLUDES Alliance for students with disabilities in STEM


Click here to view a video about SEAPD-STEM in the NSF INCLUDES: Envisioning Impact project.


The South East Alliance for Persons with Disabilities in STEM (SEAPD-STEM) has been selected by the National Science Foundation (NSF) as one of 37 alliances to receive funding for a pilot project under the NSF INCLUDES program. Under NSF award numbers 1649344, 1649236, 1649276, and 1649285, SEAPD-STEM will be effective beginning October 1, 2016.

Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (NSF INCLUDES) is a comprehensive national initiative designed to enhance U.S. leadership in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) discoveries and innovations focused on NSF's commitment to diversity, inclusion, and broadening participation in these fields. It is a special new effort for NSF that is listed as one of its 10 Big Ideas for Future Investments. Click here to see the full NSF announcement. To read the Auburn University announcement from the Office of Communications & Marketing, click here.

SEAPD-STEM builds on the success of the Alabama Alliance for Students with Disabilities in STEM (AASD-STEM), an NSF-funded collaboration between Auburn University, Auburn University Montgomery, Alabama State University, Tuskegee University, and Southern Union State Community College.  Over the past seven years, AASD-STEM has provided academic and social support for over 200 students with disabilities in STEM majors through peer and faculty mentoring, research internships, group meetings, annual conferences, and student support organizations. SEAPD-STEM will increase the reach of AASD-STEM by adding an additional 16 institutions to the program, for a total of 21 participating colleges and universities in six states and Washington, D.C.

The goals of SEAPD-STEM are:

  1. Increase the quality and quantity of persons with disabilities completing associate, undergraduate, and graduate degrees in STEM disciplines and entering the STEM workforce, especially among minorities, veterans, and women.
  2. Increase the quality and quantity of post-doctoral fellows and junior faculty with disabilities in STEM fields.
  3. Improve academic performance of students with disabilities in secondary level science and mathematics courses.
  4. Enhance communication and collaboration among post-secondary institutions, industry, government, national labs, and community in addressing the education of students with disabilities in STEM discipline.
  5. Assess our activities to understand what works to support the matriculation and retention of STEM students with disabilities in science followed by broad dissemination through workshops, conference presentations, webinars, and peer-reviewed publications.

Participating institutions by state:


  • Alabama A&M University
  • Alabama State University
  • Auburn University
  • Auburn University Montgomery
  • Bishop State Community College
  • Southern Union State Community College
  • Troy University
  • Tuskegee University
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • University of Alabama in Huntsville


  • University of Arkansas


  • Columbus State University
  • Kennesaw State University
  • University of West Georgia


  • Xavier University of Louisiana


  • Jackson State University
  • Tougaloo College


  • Middle Tennessee State University
  • University of Tennessee Knoxville
  • Vanderbilt University

Washington, D.C.:

  • Gallaudet University


For more information, please direct inquiries to includes@auburn.edu

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