In an effort to attract college students earning their degrees off island back home, the University of Guam has launched a program that offers new graduates a $45,000 a year job along with airfare.
UOG officials launched the Navigating Home program on June 19. The program focuses on students interested in marine, environmental, and sustainability sciences and engineering. After getting degrees abroad, interested participants could get a job at UOG or at a host government agency. The program would pay for the participant’s airfare and salary.
At the press conference were UOG President Thomas W. Krise; President- elect Anita Borja Enriquez; Lt. Gov. Joshua F. Tenorio; and Austin J. Shelton, Center for Island Sustainability and UOG Sea Grant director.
“It’s a program that will make it a little easier for local students to find their way back home,” Shelton said. Research programs and training at the university has made Guam's students highly marketable in the science fields, he said, adding: “We’re training our students so well that we accidentally add to the brain drain.”
The National Science Foundation provided $2.17 million for the program, which will offer year-long and summer internships.
Morgan Leon Guerrero, a recipient of the Navigating Home program, said she had to go off island for her master's program "but it was always in the back of my mind coming back and doing something for the island."
"Having this opportunity and really working in the pipeline … is awesome," she said.