VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is a part of the national service movement through the Corporation for National and Community Service and is often referred to as the domestic Peace Corps. VISTA members volunteer to serve full-time for one year on a poverty-alleviation project with a non-profit organization or public agency.
In the 2016-2017 academic year, CSU STEM VISTA placed 17 volunteers with California State University science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) departments, colleges, and institutes to build partnerships with faculty, staff, students, alumni and local communities to support the academic and professional success of traditionally underrepresented CSU STEM students, as well as K-12 student success in STEM.
CSU STEM VISTA members collaborate with industry partners, local community organizations, and schools on projects that increase hands-on learning experiences or address current critical needs of students. The hands-on experiences may be things like service learning, internships, undergraduate research, and learning communities. These hands-on experiences lead to increased graduation rates and enhanced job-ready skills. Projects addressing a current critical need may focus on food and housing security, mental well-being, or undocumented student needs.
CSU STEM VISTA is a program of the CSU Chancellor’s Office Center for Community Engagement (CCE).