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STEM occupational demand continues to increase, but many students lack key experiences and road maps to consider a career in STEM. First generation, female, disabled, and students of color remain underrepresented in the STEM community. Their successful engagement ensures quality STEM higher education, research, and innovation. 

The START Program provides authentic research training to underrepresented STEM students, from middle school through graduate school, and strengthens the STEM community through wider student engagement and support. 

Teachers START envisioning

There are so many fields in the world of STEM! START classroom outreach exposes students to an array of STEM topics through virtual and in-person visits, demonstrations, tours, and interactive classroom learning experiences on UK campus and beyond. START puts STEM within reach by showcasing many areas of study and available career pathways. START helps students envision their future in STEM.

Students START apprenticing

The START Apprentice Program pairs rising high school Juniors and Seniors, age 16 and older, with near-peer UK students and faculty who have been trained as Mentors. Together, Apprentice/Mentor experience authentic STEM research training in campus labs and beyond, access the STEM community, and receive coaching and academic development while gaining robust tools for sustained success.

Mentors START empowering

You don't need to be a STEM major to be a START Mentor. START is currently recruiting UK undergraduate and graduate students who are passionate about student access. The START Apprentice program pairs high school students with a UK Mentor who has received credentialed training from START. You have so much to offer an aspiring STEM student. Get Involved and serve as a START Mentor!



START will host several 3-week Summer Apprenticeships Sessions on the University of Kentucky campus during summer of 2022. Click on the button below for more information on how to get involved!



UK START & UK Dietetics and Human Nutrition host local high school tour

The UK START Program partnered with the UK Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition to host a tour for Frederick Douglas High School students. In addition to hosting tours, START aims to engage and support underrepresented STEM students through a variety of virtual and classroom presentations at several schools in the area.

Learn About 2022 Curiosity Fair at Info Session April 7

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 5, 2022) — The University of Kentucky will host an information session for this fall’s 2022 Curiosity Fair from 4-5 p.m. Thursday, April 7, in the William T. Young Gallery. The information session is open to everyone.

Registration Open for Free ‘Education as a Civil Right’ Virtual Conference

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 31, 2022) — Register now to attend the free virtual conference "Education as a Civil Right — Truth, Justice and Equity for All," taking place online April 7-9.