ADVANCING THE CONVERSATION ON DIVERSITY, EQUITY,
AND INCLUSION IN HIGHER EDUCATION AND BEYOND
The Purdue University Office of the Provost announced this week its Diversity Transformation Award (DTA) program, which is an initiative to support increased minority student and faculty representation at the university. The provost’s office is committing $1 million to fund five to eight proposals for two years, for up to $150,000 per project. Proposals will only be accepted from Purdue...
A scholarship program being piloted at the University of Michigan (UM) aims to increase diversity at the institution by awarding four-year, full-tuition scholarships to high-achieving, low-income Michigan students. The High Achieving Involved Leader (HAIL) scholarship is valued at $60,000 and will include extra resources to assist students with the application process. The program is targeted at Michigan high school seniors...
INSIGHT Into Diversity recently spoke with three female deans of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) schools. These women provided insight on the critical need to increase the number of women in STEM professions and improve math and science education for our nation’s youth. Maria V. Kalevitch, PhD, is the dean of Robert Morris University’s (RMU) School of Engineering, Mathematics,...
The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) announces an initiative to improve success among underserved student populations, particularly first-generation, low-income, and minority students, as well as adult learners. The initiative — called “Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence: Campus-Based Strategies for Student Success” — is part of USA Funds’ Completion with a Purpose project, and the organization is funding...
Applications are now being accepted for the Thurgood Marshall College Fund’s Apple HBCU Scholars Program, which will provide scholarship, mentorship, and internship opportunities to undergraduate students at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Funded by Apple Inc., the Scholars Program is the largest and most comprehensive scholarship effort in HBCU history. The program will provide 30 students with a wide...
Today, Campus Pride released its annual list of Top 25 LGBTQ-Friendly Colleges and Universities of 2015. This year’s list is based on responses to the Campus Pride Index, a national benchmarking tool that self-assesses LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs, and practices at institutions of higher education. Campus Pride is a national nonprofit organization for student leaders and campus groups working to create...
Black faculty at colleges and universities across the country report feeling pressure to be “entertaining” when presenting academic research to mostly white peers, a new survey shows. In this Vanderbilt University study, 33 African American faculty members were surveyed regarding their experiences “presenting while black.” Based on interviews, an overwhelming majority of participants admitted to being regularly advised by white...
Faculty and administrators at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) and nearby Hartnell College, a two-year institution, are removing obstacles that keep students from completing computer science degrees, like stereotypes about who should be in these classes. They know that when given the tools, all students are capable of excelling. Participants in the accelerated CS-in-3 program (computer science degree in...
A report out this week questions conventional wisdom and suggests that a college degree does not act as a safeguard for wealth equally for all racial groups. The office of Household Financial Stability of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis released the study, which shows that between 2007 and 2013 — during the worst years of the recession —...
“Supporting women STEM students and researchers is not only an essential part of America’s strategy to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world; it is also important to women themselves.” — The Office of Science and Technology Policy, The White House    The INSIGHT Into Diversity 100 Inspiring Women in STEM Award honors women who work to make a difference...
As science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professionals work to advance innovation in the U.S., another nationwide battle is taking place within higher education: the struggle to increase representation of minorities and women in the STEM workforce. According to 2013 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the STEM workforce is composed of 7 percent Hispanics and Latinos, 6 percent African...
Many colleges and universities are compliant with the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the nation, but religiously affiliated colleges that are against gay unions are under particular pressure to conform, experts say. The Supreme Court ruled in June that marriage is a constitutionally protected right that same-sex couples can exercise in all 50 states. In the...
The University of Oklahoma (OU) has a long history of supporting minority students majoring in engineering. The College of Engineering’s Multicultural Engineering Program (MEP), which works to recruit and retain minorities and women, was founded in 1981 (although, at that time it was called the Minority Engineering Program). Recognizing the challenges these students face upon arriving at a predominantly white...
Although the importance of diversity in STEM graduate education is rising in the U.S. — notably with commentary from National Science Foundation leadership — the standard graduate admissions process is lagging behind the rhetoric. Julie R. Posselt’s work at the University of Michigan has shown that most graduate admissions requirements include the GRE exam, and many admissions committees require a...
When Riza Bautista started as an undergraduate student at Wesley College, a small liberal arts and minority-serving institution in Dover, Del., she decided to study nursing. She was guided by the oft-repeated advice from friends and family to “make these four years count.” For Bautista, a returning student in her early 30s with a husband and children, the promise of...
In the U.S., occupations in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) currently make up more than one out of every 10 jobs and pay wages that are nearly twice the U.S. average, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But even with STEM-related careers projected to add 1 million additional jobs to the U.S. economy by...
INSIGHT Into Diversity recently spoke with three female deans of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) schools. These women provided insight on the critical need to increase the number of women in STEM professions and improve math and science education for our nation’s youth.   Nada Marie Anid, PhD, is the first female dean of the New York Institute of Technology’s...
Although women are slowly beginning to make up a larger overall percentage of the STEM workforce, some occupations are still experiencing a wide gender gap — and one field has actually seen a decrease in female representation. In 2013, only 26 percent of computing professionals were women, down from 35 percent in 1990, according to a study from the...
When hired last year as the University of South Carolina's (USC) first chief diversity officer, John Dozier had his work cut out for him. While minority student enrollment at the university is at 20 percent, that number has remained steady over the last several years. “It’s hard to attract people to a place that’s not always perceived as diverse,” says...
Anne Arundel Community College (AACC) in Arnold, Md., appointed its first chief diversity officer last year, and since he began, James Felton has been busy implementing new diversity and inclusion initiatives. He credits AACC President Dawn Lindsay for identifying the need for his position and for her steadfast dedication to diversity and inclusion efforts at the college. “She saw the changing...
The future requires more than “thinking outside the box.” It requires redefining what the box is in order to let go of institutional structures that no longer serve us. Inclusive Visioning is a tool that institutions and organizations can use to redefine the box and harness the power of diversity to transform their self-perception and revolutionize their vision. American society...
Regardless of whether one’s STEM career pathway is in academia, government, or industry, awards are important indicators of career success. Awards are influential in decisions regarding recruitment, hiring, promotion, recognition, and tenure. Despite their critical role in shaping career trajectories and attracting a diversity of young scholars to STEM fields, without careful attention, awards allocation processes may perpetuate gender...
Incoming students to Michigan Technological University’s mechanical engineering program this fall can expect more than a standard engineering education with the introduction of a newly designed hands-on curriculum that incorporates diversity training. The university’s Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics was selected by the National Science Foundation (NSF) as one of five mechanical engineering departments nationwide to participate in a new...
Following a national search, Marcus A. Whitehurst, PhD, has been appointed vice provost for educational equity at Penn State University, a position he has held on an interim basis since the passing of Terrell Jones on Aug. 19, 2014. Prior to becoming interim vice provost, Whitehurst served under Jones as assistant vice provost for educational equity for seven years. In this...
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton unveiled a $350 billion plan on Monday to make college more affordable in order to ease the financial burden placed on students and their families. Clinton announced her plan, called the New College Compact, at a town-hall-style event in Exeter, N.H., a state plagued by a high level of student debt. The plan is based...
At the White House’s inaugural Demo Day on August 4, more than 100 engineering school deans presented an open letter in which they pledged to take steps to increase opportunities for women and minorities in engineering programs. The deans, through the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), outlined specific commitments their schools will make to develop diversity plans, participate in...
The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International, a global accrediting body and membership association for business schools, announced on Monday the appointment of Christine Clements as chief diversity and inclusion advocate for the organization. This new role — the first of its kind at AACSB — will be in addition to her responsibilities as senior vice president...
An Ad Hoc Task Force on Gender Equity at the Yale School of Medicine (YSM) has been examining reports of gender bias at the school and released its findings last week. The task force reports that concerns about gender equity at the school have been present for at least two decades. Advancement, salary equity, and an unfavorable climate for women...
A new policy enacted at George Washington University (GWU) seeks to broaden access to higher education for underrepresented and underprivileged students by doing away with its standardized test score requirement in the admission process. Beginning this month, ACT and SAT scores will no longer be required for most undergraduate applicants at the university. The policy change is meant to broaden...
This past Sunday, July 26, marked the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by President George H. W. Bush, which made it illegal for employers to discriminate based on disability. The ADA also ensures equal access in government services, public accommodations, commercial facilities, and public transportation. At the bill’s signing, President Bush said, “Let...
As of July 1, Purdue University no longer has a dedicated chief diversity officer (CDO) position. Purdue Provost Debasish Dutta has assumed the role of former CDO G. Christine Taylor. According to the Lafayette Journal & Courier, no diversity programs will be eliminated at this time, and Dutta says he plans to integrate the Division of Diversity and Inclusion’s efforts...
Due to inconsistent policies regarding sexual assault on college campuses across the state of California, lawmakers are considering a set of proposals that would better address the issue. Proposals include requiring schools to disclose more information about disciplinary action taken against student offenders and requiring all public colleges and universities to note on transcripts when a student is ineligible to...
A new long-term study aims to track changes in students’ attitudes and behaviors in regard to faith and diversity using surveys. This fall, incoming freshmen at more than 130 colleges and universities nationwide will kick off the study by taking surveys regarding how students with different worldviews and religious backgrounds live, learn, and work together. Students will take additional surveys...
Last week, the U.S. Department of Education dismissed an affirmative action complaint that was brought against Harvard University in May. The Asian American Coalition, made up of more than 60 Harvard students, had filed the complaint saying that the university utilizes racial quotas that unfairly discriminate against Asian American students. Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. filed a similar suit against Harvard...
In an effort to increase the number of underrepresented and low-income students who enter STEM fields, the University of Cincinnati (UC) kicked off its Scholars Academy bridge program in June in partnership with Hughes STEM High School in Cincinnati. Through the program, students at the predominantly African American high school who are interested in pursuing careers in STEM fields are...
Owner of Potomac Publishing, Inc. and publisher of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine Lenore Pearlstein will speak at the Ohio Diversity Officers Collaboration’s (ODOC) Seventh Annual Diversity Conference in Rootstown, Ohio, later this month. This year’s theme is “Shifting Diversity Gears: Challenges and Solutions.” At the event, Pearlstein will discuss diversity and inclusion trends at colleges and universities nationwide based on...
New rules on how colleges and universities must protect students against sexual assault went into effect July 1. The regulations — amendments to the Clery Act — are known as the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination (SaVE) Act, part of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA), which President Obama signed in March 2013. The U.S. Department of Education is responsible...
In the past week, vandals have defaced Confederate-era landmarks on three separate college campuses in the South, renewing calls to address the history of segregation and racism. At the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill, someone covered the base of the “Silent Sam” memorial with “KKK,” “Murderer,” and “Black Lives Matter.” The statue, which was dedicated in 1913,...
The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to re-examine a case next term involving affirmative action at the University of Texas at Austin (UT), which challenges the university’s use of race in its admissions decisions. The court last considered the case in 2013. Instead of rendering a decision at that time, the justices requested that the lower court take another look...
In a landmark decision Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of same-sex marriage, making the United States the 21st country to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide. The ruling marks a huge victory for the gay rights movement and members of the LGBTQ community. Married same-sex partners will now be able to enjoy the same legal rights and benefits...
The U.S. Department of Education is backtracking on its plan to develop a college-rating system, saying instead that it will unveil a more consumer-driven website later this summer to provide information to help prospective students make informed decisions about where to attend college. “Through our research and our conversations with the field, we have found that the needs of students...
The University of Virginia (UVA) announced plans to name a new dorm, opening this fall, after William and Isabella Gibbons, a former slave couple that had been prominent figures in emancipation efforts. The President’s Commission on Slavery and the University, founded by UVA President Teresa A. Sullivan, recommended the name as part of a larger effort to acknowledge the...
How four law school graduates are making the most of their degrees in an industry still recovering from the recession. A law degree once promised a stable, secure, and lucrative career. But like most other industries, the legal profession was hit hard by the 2008 recession. Over the next several years, employment opportunities diminished and law school enrollment dropped, and those who...
ABA President-elect Paulette Brown discusses racism in the legal profession and her plans after taking office When Paulette Brown takes office in August as the first female African American president of the American Bar Association (ABA), she will be able to add this designation to an already long list of accomplishments and recognitions. Brown began her law career in 1976 after graduating...
INSIGHT Into Diversity spoke with three law firm diversity professionals who weighed in on issues currently affecting the legal profession.  They offered recommendations on how law schools and firms can attract underrepresented students and produce well-rounded lawyers. Michelle P. Wimes serves as the director of professional development and inclusion at Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, PC — one of the nation’s largest...
This month, I will complete my first year as the dean of the Howard University School of Law. I wanted to offer some observations from my time in this role and some reflections on the critical need to address diversity in the legal profession. Recently, Deborah L. Rhode of Stanford University wrote an opinion piece for The Washington Post in...
Long considered the ticket to prosperity, law schools are now fighting to remain relevant. Many prospective students are considering the long-term costs of attending law school and are deciding it’s not worth the investment amid a dismal job market for young lawyers. With fewer jobs available — as many law firms are still struggling to recover from the 2008 recession...
One in five women is sexually assaulted while in college, often by someone she knows. So says the first report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault, which was published in April 2014. Other data from the U.S. Department of Education reported 5,000 instances of forcible sex offenses on college campuses in 2013, but...
How colleges and universities are struggling with the intersection of freedom of speech and inclusivity on campus In the U.S., freedom of speech is a right that has always been both vehemently defended and highly contested — and nowhere has it been more utilized and criticized than on college and university campuses. But in recent years, universities have struggled to balance...
From mid-2010 — when I took the helm of the Medical College of Georgia — through five years that saw the creation of an aligned and integrated healthcare system and the consolidation of two co-located universities to create what is now Georgia Regents University (GRU) and Health System, we at GRU have made building a diverse, tolerant, and inclusive...
When state funding to support public higher education began to recede in the ’90s and took a free fall during the 2007-2009 recession, many programs and initiatives saw damaging budget cuts. During these austere times, resources for diversity and inclusion efforts — which for some institutions have been seen largely as secondary to the core academic mission — have...
The core Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program — the faculty portion of the international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs — takes professors beyond the classroom and into the world of diplomacy. Established in 1946 as part of the broader Fulbright Program to increase mutual understanding between U.S. citizens and people...
Diversity isn’t a new concept at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, Ohio. The school has had a diversity officer for 23 years, several African American members on its leadership team — both male and female — and a variety of student groups dedicated to the cause. But now, Cuyahoga — often referred to by the community as Tri-C —...
Minnesota has long been home to a dynamic American Indian community, with 11 federally recognized tribal nations. But mass migration of tribal members in recent decades has contributed to an even larger American Indian population in the state. At the University of Minnesota (UMN), serving this community and its unique needs has — and remains — an important focus. Many...
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, color, race, national origin, and religion. The law’s protections are elemental. An employer cannot choose a man over a woman for a position based on his presumption that women lack the strength to perform the job in question. They cannot deny a current employee a promotion...
Composed of member chapters on college campuses nationwide, Student Veterans of America (SVA) is a nonprofit organization that helps veterans overcome obstacles in order to reintegrate them into campus life and help them achieve academic success. “Essentially our job is to help veterans transition from the service into higher education and into successful, rewarding careers,” says Walter Tillman, director of...
As the U.S. economy continues its slow ascent, some states are still spending less on higher education than before the onset of the latest recession. During the recession, 48 states — all but Alaska and North Dakota — cut funding for higher education. Today, Alaska, North Dakota, and Wyoming are the only states spending more on higher education than they...
William Mitchell College of Law (WMCL) in St. Paul, Minn., has created a part-time law degree program that is making it easier for nontraditional students to advance their careers without uprooting their lives. This hybrid program, which launched in January, combines remote, online learning with intensive, experiential on-campus sessions. Gregory Duhl, a professor of law at WMCL and the academic...
INSIGHT Into Diversity spoke with three law firm diversity professionals who weighed in on issues currently affecting the legal profession. In this online-only portion of the roundtable, they discuss law schools’ decreasing enrollment and the importance of cultural competency in the profession, as well as offer advice to law school graduates.  Michelle P. Wimes serves as the director of professional...
Elson S. Floyd, who led Washington State University (WSU) as its president for the past eight years, passed away June 20 after a battle with colon cancer. He was 59. Floyd had announced just two weeks ago that he would take a leave of absence for his health. He remained active throughout his illness, though, and in April, Floyd succeeded...
INSIGHT Into Diversity spoke with Paulette Brown, president-elect of the American Bar Association, for our July/August issue. In this online-only portion of the conversation, she discusses unconscious bias and how those in the law profession can overcome it. What skills do you believe the lawyers of tomorrow will require in order to address the needs of, and the complex issues faced...
A U.S. District Court has ruled that Hofstra University student Iknoor Singh is not required to shave his beard, cut his hair, or stop wearing a turban in order to enroll in the U.S. Army’s Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC). The junior finance and business analytics major follows the Sikh religion, which forbids male followers from shaving or cutting their...
Barnard College announced it will begin accepting applications from those who “consistently live and identify as women, regardless of the gender assigned to them at birth.” The new policy mirrors those at a number of other women’s colleges that have begun admitting transgender women. “When I first started hearing from trans students, I think as a human being, I couldn’t...
A recent study by researchers at the University of Houston (UH) suggests that long-term exposure to the news may have a negative impact on a person’s racial bias. Lead by Temple Northup, assistant professor at UH’s Jack J. Valenti School of Communication, the study examined the influence of news coverage on an individual’s unconscious attitudes toward social groups. The study, Effects...
Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont has introduced a bill into Congress that would subsidize tuition to public four-year colleges for American students. His plan would divide the financial burden — roughly $70 billion per year — between the federal government and state governments. “We used to lead the world in the percentage of our people who graduated college. Today,...
Colleges and universities receiving GI Bill funding will have an additional six months to comply with federal legislation that requires them to charge in-state tuition for veterans and their families. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced last week that the July 1 deadline has been pushed back to Jan. 1, 2016. Public institutions not in full compliance by...
Google Inc. has created a new version of its 20 percent time perk — which allows employees to dedicate one-fifth of their time to promising side projects — that is focused solely on diversity. The original version of this employee benefit led to the creation of many popular online Google services, such as Gmail and Google News. This new version...
A growing number of U.S. college students show no religious preference, according to a 2014 survey conducted by the University of California, Los Angeles’ annual Cooperative Institutional Research Program. The number of freshmen who selected “none” as their religious preference increased to about one in four in 2014, from about one in six in 2005. Also on the rise is...
Nonprofit organizations are working together to make study abroad more accessible for underrepresented students and students with disabilities Top photo courtesy of Ian Forber-Pratt. Other photos courtesy of Mobility International USA.  There is often a misconception — compounded by pamphlets and travel brochures bearing images of young, white female college students — that students with disabilities and those from underrepresented groups are excluded...
International students are streaming onto American college campuses in unprecedented numbers. However, many of them face significant financial and academic hurdles as they advance in their studies, placing greater demands on schools to better serve these students’ needs and expectations. Compared to a decade ago, 40 percent more foreign-born students now attend American colleges, according to the Institute of International...
How one organization is making a U.S. education a reality for more foreign students If Gustavo Torres da Silva were to apply to college in his native Brazil, he would have to take a national exam and, based on his results, he would be placed at a university, where he would receive a complimentary education. But Torres doesn’t want to study...
Through a new online approach to learning, students at the University of Washington Bothell travel to classrooms across the world via the Internet As the first member of her Ukrainian immigrant family to attend college, Victoria Vedmed understands the importance of getting a global education. Yet, as a pre-med biology major, the most obvious path to getting this type of international...
Meaningful study abroad is a high impact co-curricular activity that develops students academically, personally, and professionally and prepares them for leadership in an increasingly global 21st century economy. Globally and culturally competent graduates are essential to U.S. economic and other national interests. With the impact study abroad can have on students, it is alarming that those from diverse backgrounds do...
How one historically black college is offering its students a once-in-a-lifetime international experience In 2012-2013, a mere 9 percent of U.S. undergraduates studied abroad, according to data from the Institute of International Education (IIE). About 76 percent of those students were white, while only 5.3 percent were African American. “When I read the data, it was a revelation that very few...
A top-down and bottom-up commitment to diversity and inclusion has become a trademark of one of the most diverse universities in the U.S. This team approach is what makes Dianne Rush Woods so proud of her school, California State University, East Bay (CSUEB). “We have a very diverse campus, and the president wanted to focus on strategies and tactics to support that...
Elon University takes pride in its origins in the traditions of the United Church of Christ. That heritage equips us to value civil and human rights, to take the spiritual life seriously, and to seek the education of the whole person for our students. That tradition also paves the way for our multi-faith efforts and our additional efforts to...
One of the ways that colleges and universities demonstrate their commitment to diversity and inclusion is by incorporating that commitment into their institutional strategic plans and by providing leadership at the senior level of administration. On many campuses, a chief diversity officer (CDO) is appointed to provide strategic leadership for diversity and inclusion efforts. Likewise, when many campuses seek...
Most colleges today want to be recognized as LGBTQ-friendly. The question then becomes, what are they doing that makes them worthy of this recognition. These days, on college campuses, the responsibility for creating a safe, welcoming learning environment for LGBTQ students often falls on the out LGBTQ students or faculty and staff. Many of them volunteer their time to improve...
The student body at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, Ill., is a reflection of the surrounding community. Located in a southwest suburb of Chicago, the college serves 26 municipalities that include people from different races, ethnicities, socioeconomic classes, religions, and sexual orientations. “I think just by the community that we serve, is diverse in and of itself,” says...
A poster campaign at California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) using images to speak out against racial and cultural appropriation sent a powerful message to the public and the campus community this spring on the harmful effects of stereotypes. The campaign, titled Beyond the Stereotype, resulted from conversations about the university’s campus climate. In 2013, members of a CSUSM sorority posted...
President Obama joined a liberal professor and a conservative economist this week at the Catholic-Evangelical Leadership Summit on Overcoming Poverty, held at Georgetown University, to discuss the issue of poverty in America. The panel discussion included Obama; Robert Putnam, a Harvard University professor; Arthur Brooks, president of the conservative, pro-business think tank American Enterprise Institute. The panel addressed a roomful...
We’ve all heard the adage “fight fire with fire” — now one university is applying this way of thinking to how it confronts racism and prejudice. Through a new program, the University of Colorado (UC) is posting racist language across campus with the goal of making it disappear. About 500 intentionally offensive posters have been posted around UC’s campus, where...
Following protests by Latino students, the University of Northern Colorado (UNC) in Greeley reinstates its Mexican-American studies program, which had been suspended since March due to low enrollment. Students majoring in Mexican-American studies at UNC can follow a liberal arts tract of study or choose an emphasis in secondary teaching, which  prepares them to teach social studies to culturally diverse...
In an effort to increase diversity — specifically the number of African Americans — in the U.S. tech sector, Google has embedded software engineers at a handful of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). While these schools produce 35 percent of all African Americans with computer science degrees, the numbers of those who make their way to Silicon Valley’s top...
After a five-month-long, stalled nomination, Congress confirms President Obama’s nomination for U.S. Attorney General, making Loretta Lynch the first female African American to head the Justice Department. Growing up in Greensboro, N.C. — where her parents could not legally vote and her grandparents were sharecroppers — Lynch was interested in law and order from a young age, attending court proceedings...
The Census Bureau lists Vermont among the 10 whitest states in the nation, yet in this small, picturesque New England state, the University of Vermont College of Medicine is intentionally helping diversify the region’s physician workforce. “It seems there is always work to do when addressing diversity and inclusive excellence, especially in a very homogeneous state such as Vermont,” says...
As the number of students with autism entering postsecondary education increases, colleges and universities offer more programs and accommodations to help them manage the demands of college life Three years ago, Aleza Greene started the Autism Support Program at the University of Arkansas. Greene, a clinical assistant professor in the College of Education and Health Professions at the university, previously...
The relative lack of minorities in the dental profession never deterred Devin Stewart, who is African American, from pursuing his dream of becoming a dentist. As early as high school, Stewart sought advice from dentists in his community and shadowed them during summer breaks. “I discovered that people with beautiful teeth and smiles seemed to fascinate me,” he says. “I...
When the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was implemented in 2014, an estimated 10 million more people in the U.S. gained access to healthcare. But the influx of new patients tends to be less affluent and more diverse than previous patient populations. Research shows that low-income, minority patients tend to have more risk factors for chronic illnesses; therefore, healthcare providers must...
Photos courtesy of Tom Fougerousse and University of Louisville At the University of Louisville School of Medicine, preparing students to provide the best quality care will soon go beyond textbooks to address inherent human bias and a lack of sensitivity. “I think, as we look at our roles as physicians, it’s really important that we provide high-quality, compassionate, competent care to...
Students at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine have made it their mission to connect underrepresented and disadvantaged youth to opportunities in healthcare professions. Through the School of Medicine’s MedLink mentorship program, current medical students introduce high school students to the world of health sciences through a series of Saturday workshops. “They are really targeting first-generation...
In dealing with a health crisis, patients will often turn to their religious beliefs and practices to help them cope. Yet many physicians and medical students are unsure how to address the spiritual needs of their patients. At the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, Aamir Hussain is working to close that gap. Hussain, a first-year medical student at...
Conveniently nestled between 22 federally recognized American Indian tribes, A.T. Still University’s (ATSU) Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health (ASDOH), in Mesa, has graduated 22 American Indians, and all but one have returned to work on reservations. Nine American Indian students are currently enrolled in ASDOH’s dentistry program, more than at any other dental school in the country. Perhaps more...
Medical, dental, and veterinary schools and nonprofit organizations work to address the lack of diversity in the field and create a workforce that better represents the nation’s demographics As the U.S. population continues to grow, so do the numbers of underrepresented minorities (URMs), paving the way for a true melting pot of backgrounds, ideas, and perspectives. Yet this rich and...
A coalition of 11 universities shares innovative ideas for improving educational outcomes for students from all backgrounds According to the University Innovation Alliance (UIA), if college completion rates continue at their current pace, by 2025 the U.S. will be short 16 million college graduates, limiting our country’s ability to compete with better-educated global workforces. Additionally, students from high-income families are...
Columbia College of Dental Medicine is on a mission to increase minority presence in the dental profession At Columbia University, Dennis Mitchell is helping fill the pipeline for minorities in the dental profession, a field where they are woefully underrepresented. Mitchell is an associate professor of clinical dental medicine and senior associate dean for student development for Columbia’s College of Dental Medicine...
  The racial and ethnic composition of the health professions workforce, including the dental workforce, fails miserably to reflect the increasing diversity of the U.S. population. Census data from 2010 indicate that African Americans, Hispanics, and American Indians respectively constitute 12.6, 16.3, and 0.9 percent of the U.S. population, totaling approximately 30 percent of the overall population. However, they represent...
After submitting your credentials, responding to requests for additional information, engaging in various levels of preliminary interviews, and generally being kept on tenterhooks for three months, you have been invited to meet with a representative of the organization you hope to make your next career home. Until this point, your credentials and experience have been the objects of assessment....