The 81 college teams in the first four Mentor-Connect cohorts increased the geographic diversity of colleges submitting proposals to the National Science Foundation's ATE program: the selected colleges are in regions within 27 different states where an ATE grant has either never been funded, or has not been funded in the past 10 years. Since NSF started the ATE program in 1993 its competitive review process has awarded ATE grants in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. However, many of these grants have gone to colleges in metropolitan areas, and often these institutions have received multiple ATE grants.
Evidence that Mentor-Connect is adding geographic diversity to NSF-ATE proposals comes from the fact that 55 of the 61 colleges in the first three Mentor-Connect cohorts submitted proposals to NSF.
Evidence that Mentor-Connect is improving the quality of NSF-ATE proposals is indicated by the following: 22 of the 36 colleges in the first two Mentor-Connect cohorts that submitted proposals in either October 2013 or 2014 have been awarded grants of approximately $200,000 each in the program track Small Grants for Institutions New to ATE. This 61% success rate exceeds the ATE's program-wide funding rate of 22%.