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IUPUI receives grant to support STEM faculty diversity and inclusion

For Immediate Release Feb 3, 2021

INDIANAPOLIS – The Aspire: The National Alliance for Inclusive & Diverse STEM Faculty initiative, co-led by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, or APLU, has announced new grants to groups of universities and partners to catalyze collaborative efforts to deepen the use of inclusive STEM teaching practices and increase diversity among STEM faculty.

IUPUI is among the universities. Its cohort is led by Gina Sanchez Gibau, associate vice chancellor for faculty diversity and inclusion.

IUPUI gateway in winter
IUPUI has received a grant to help advance practices that address institutional barriers to a more diverse STEM faculty.Photo by Liz Kaye, Indiana University

The grants, part of Aspire’s Institutional Change Initiative, or IChange, are designed to help the participating institutions advance effective practices that address institutional barriers to a more diverse STEM faculty.

“Our grant project, Midwest Experiences in Mentoring Excellence, is designed to foster collaboration across IChange institutions,” Gibau said. “We are excited to work with our colleagues from other Midwestern institutions to leverage our change efforts and create new connections among STEM faculty in the region.”

Along with Gibau, the IUPUI team is composed of Etta Ward, assistant vice chancellor for research and development; Tabitha Hardy, assistant dean for student development and academic affairs; Katrenia Reed Hughes, assistant professor of organizational leadership, School of Engineering and Technology; Corinne Renguette, associate professor, technical communication, School of Engineering and Technology; and Randall Roper, associate professor of genetics, School of Science.

IUPUI will lead a virtual effort to provide improved mentoring experiences for STEM faculty alongside Ball State University, Cleveland State University, the University of Cincinnati, Iowa State University and Michigan State University.

The project will create a regional network providing culturally responsive training to mentors who help develop STEM faculty from underrepresented groups. It will connect mentor and mentee STEM faculty across these institutions, placing emphasis on career-development opportunities for women of color. The catalytic grant, which is $40,000, will add support for network activities through 2023.

The catalytic-funding grants will help advance the alliance’s efforts to deepen the preparation of all STEM faculty to be inclusive and effective in their teaching, research mentoring and advising; diversify the faculty through effective recruitment, hiring and retention of URG STEM faculty via institutional transformation in practices, policies and resources; and foster institutional cultures that recognize and value inclusivity and diversity broadly, and in the context of STEM faculty work specifically.

APLU is a research, policy and advocacy organization dedicated to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. With a membership of 246 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems and affiliated organizations, APLU’s agenda is built on the three pillars of increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement.

Annually, APLU member campuses enroll 5 million undergraduates and 1.3 million graduate students, award 1.3 million degrees, employ 1.3 million faculty and staff, and conduct $49.3 billion in university-based research.

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