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University of California Santa Barbara
Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA)

MESA University Program

The MESA University Program is a UCSB undergraduate retention program for students who are first generation college students within STEM field majors. Coordinated by the University of California, Office of the President, the MESA University Program maximizes undergraduate students' academic potential to prepare them for careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. Staff and faculty work together to increase students’ awareness and access to graduate degree programs, and to promote community service through outreach events and mentoring.

Other Program Partners

"After 40 years, MESA remains a model on how to "get it right" for students in the fields of mathematics, engineering and science."

– Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction


Academic Excellence Workshops – Students at a university/college campus are offered workshops and group study sessions covering core math and science classes, curricula and concepts to sustain high levels of academic achievement.

Clustering – Peers are encouraged to enroll in the same course sections of core math and science classes, and follow up sessions are facilitated to review course material and raise students’ performance levels.

Orientation Sessions – MESA leaders imparts college survival skills to incoming students majoring in math, engineering or computer science who are first generation -offering an overview of personnel, processes and key resources.

Career Advising – Students are exposed to engineering and other STEM fields thorough industry mentors, job shadowing, career fairs, national conferences, internships opportunities and visits to industry sites.

Academic & Career Advising – The MESA staff help support MESA University Program students by helping them find the resources they need on campus, seek academic support when needed, monitor grades and academic progress, help students seek and apply to internships, research experiences, and scholarships.

Links to Networks – Campus-based and international networks that provide access to partner chapters, mentors, professional organizations, leadership training, professional guest speakers, MESA and UCSB Alumni and tours of STEM companies.

Student Center – At UCSB, the MESA Center has “multipurpose space”, with other affiliated sites, which is used for study sessions, workshops, volunteer meetings and information sharing.

Professional Development Workshops - UCSB MESA hosts several professional development workshops throughout the year, including the Professional Academy for Student Success (PASS) event in the fall quarter. Staff or guest presenters will focus on various topics, such as strengthening your application components for internships, scholarships, graduate school and jobs; developing networking skills; health, wellness and finding balance; graduate school versus industry; and more.

For Statewide MESA Information, including MESA Community College Program (MCCP) see:
Mathematics, Engineering, and Science Achievement (MESA) University of California's Office of the President

MESA University Program Enrollment

MESA University Program Scholarship Application

MESA Successful Transition Program (M-STP)