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The AEMES (Achieving Excellence in Mathematics, Engineering and Science) programs serve students interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and promote the success of students from social groups historically underrepresented in those fields. We seek to ensure access for all students interested in enrolling in STEM courses and in obtaining research experiences.

AEMES facilitates success by focusing on three areas:


To increase the number and retention of students from groups traditionally underrepresented in STEM disciplines (e.g., students of color and students who are the first in their families to attend college) by helping them succeed in STEM courses and majors at Smith College.

Gateway Experience

To ensure success in our introductory STEM courses through the AEMES Scholars program, peer mentoring, learning strategies courses, study groups and community-building events.

Capstone Experience

To support students interested in completing honors and special studies projects through programs such as AEMES Scholars, Early Research and the McKinley Honors Fellowship Program. To recruit older peer mentors and peer tutors from the community to serve as leaders for younger students.


In 2007, faculty members Laura Katz (biology) and Kate Queeney (chemistry) launched the AEMES Programs to enhance support for diverse students who are interested in STEM at Smith College. The programs have been supported by a generous gift from Janet McKinley '76 with additional funding from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Dreyfus Foundation, and Smith College. The AEMES Programs build in part on a long-running Peer Mentoring program that was first established in 1995 by program coordinator Casey Clark, professor of psychology Brenda Allen, and several other science faculty members.