Oregon MESA Regional Center

What is it?

Oregon MESA creates equitable access for students to the innovation economy by building capacity within communities. MESA does this through partnering with schools, training teachers, and engaging parents. Together, the MESA community helps underrepresented and underserved middle and high school students achieve STEM scholastic success, leadership skills, social support, and college enrollment. EMSP now hosts Oregon MESA’s East County Regional Center at Mt. Hood Community College, serving the school, community, and industry partners in our region.

Why it’s Important:

There is an urgent need for STEM professionals: 1.2 million unfilled STEM jobs, $40.33/hour is the median earnings of an Oregon STEM professional compared to $19.08/hour for all other jobs. By 8th grade, low income students are 20-25 points behind their more affluent peers in both math and science test scores. Only 4% of underrepresented minority high school graduates complete the prerequisite math and science courses for an engineering major. And less than 20% of engineering and computer science undergraduates are either women or underrepresented minorities. Only 12% of engineering and science professionals are underrepresented minorities.

How it Works:

MESA partners with middle and high schools, paying teachers to gain professional development and serve as Advisors to the program. Students participate in an design-based invention process, building up to competitions, visit college and career sites, and engage family members in a culturally and regionally-responsive way. Additionally, mentors (college students or STEM professionals) support each school with their strong technical knowledge and a passion for engaging youth.


Coming Soon!


Robin Cousineau, Regional Center Coordinator, robin.cousineau@mhcc.edu

Oregon MESA Regional Center Launch October 2019


Centennial High School
Centennial Park High School
David Douglas High School
Dexter McCarty Middle School
Mt. Hood Community College
Oregon MESA
Parkrose High School
Parkrose Middle School
Portland State University
Reynolds High School