As reported in December, NSF DUE (Division of Undergraduate Education) has combined many prior programs into the new Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) program.
A new "Dear Colleague" letter
has been distributed inviting applicants to participate in one of three "Ideas Labs" in March.
These labs are meant to bring together faculty across disciplinary boundaries. Of potential interest to those in the mathematical sciences:
The biology-focused lab has a central theme of increasing mathematical content of bio programs; thus any with an interest in math bio may want to consider applying.
The engineering lab is focused on broadening participation. Given the critical role played by lower-division mathematics courses in the first two years of engineering curricula, this theme will necessarily benefit from inclusion of math sciences faculty.
The geosciences lab is primarily focused on mechanisms to make such programs more-readily available at smaller institutions. However, with MPE 2013 now morphing into a broader, ongoing Mathematics of Planet Earth initiative the time seems right to engage directly with the geosciences community to explore common concerns.
Applications to participate are due on February 4. While the turnaround time is shorter than one might like, this is a significant opportunity to help inform future directions for funding for undergraduate STEM education.