The Center for STEM Diversity

Established in 2008, Tufts' Center for STEM Diversity (CSD) works in partnership with the School of Engineering and the School of Arts and Sciences to foster a diverse and inclusive science and engineering learning environment. We focus on strengthening meaningful student participation in science and engineering, specifically for traditionally underrepresented groups, including women, African Americans, Native Americans, the LGBTQ community, and those who identify as Hispanic and/or Latinx. We also work intentionally with first-generation college students and with students from low-income backgrounds.

Where is the Center for STEM Diversity located?

Our center is currently located on the 2nd floor of 20 Professors Row on the Medford/Somerville campus.

What programs does the Center for STEM Diversity offer?

In collaboration with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, we recruit academically talented students from underrepresented groups and facilitate programming that fosters academic achievement and social development, which leads to high graduation rates and successful job placement. Our flagship programs are as follows:

  • BEST: the Bridge to Engineering Success at Tufts program begins before matriculation with a six-week summer component that gives students an opportunity to take courses and participate in workshops designed to assist in the transition from high school to college. BEST is a challenging but rewarding four-year college experience in which the Center for STEM Diversity is viewed as a home away from home for BEST scholars on campus. CSD provides well-rounded support for academic success and personal growth for each "BESTie" and maintains a family atmosphere.
  • RISE: the Redefining the Image of Science and Engineering program is an academic advising course designed to support academically talented first-generation students pursuing degrees in science and engineering. RISE scholars receive advising, mentorship, and academic credit for participation in weekly seminars that focus on navigating college life, exposure to faculty research, and professional networking.
  • STEM Ambassadors: STEM Ambassadors is a professional development program with an outreach mission to share a passion and excitement for the STEM fields with local middle and high school students in the greater Tufts community, including Medford, Somerville, and Boston. STEM Ambassadors can be found at local schools giving presentations on engaging topics of their choice and conducting hands-on activities with the students. Through these interactive presentations, the hope is that students will be able to relate and build personal connections to varying STEM disciplines. Ambassadors will also complete an intense series of workshops designed to develop exceptional leadership and communication skills.
  • LSAMP: Tufts is a member of the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, a national program supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) with a goal to strengthen the preparation, representation, and success of historically underrepresented students in the science and engineering fields, while encouraging research opportunities and graduate studies.
What other resources does the Center offer?

Outside of our flagship programs, the CSD is a member institutions of the GEM Fellowship Consortium and through this initiative assists underrepresented students in STEM as they pursue STEM graduate degrees. The CSD also offers academic workshops with topics such as “How to Study for Science” and “How to Find Summer Research Opportunities,” and often brings industry professionals to campus for panel discussions. The Center can provide academic advising support, funding support, and is also a safe-space for students to relax and interact with one another. The Center for STEM Diversity serves as an umbrella organization for student chapters of science and engineering professional societies and acts in an advisory capacity to these societies, which include the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), Out in STEM (oSTEM), the Society of Latino Engineers and Scientists (SOLES), and the Society of Women Engineers (SWE).

How can I contact the Center or learn more?

Students can always feel free to drop by our Center! We can also be reached by email at or by phone at 617-627-4785.

Supporting Students of African Descent