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ERIC Number: EJ1115566
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 17
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0748-8475
We're Not All White Men: Using a Cohort/Cluster Approach to Diversify STEM Faculty Hiring
Sgoutas-Emch, Sandra; Baird, Lisa; Myers, Perla; Camacho, Michelle; Lord, Susan
Thought & Action, v32 n1 p91-107 Sum 2016
The lack of diversity among higher-education faculty in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines represents a grave structural inequality with serious consequences for students. Fixing it means rethinking the pathway to the professoriate for women and people of color, and avoiding the problems with hiring in STEM fields that persist for many reasons, including: (1) structural factors and the social context of hiring; (2) personally held beliefs and values, including implicit biases of those in positions of leadership; and (3) the absence of policies and processes to address historically underrepresented faculty. It is well known that traditional faculty searches and attempts to diversify faculty are ineffective in landing faculty of color and women, especially in STEM. One approach being implemented to enhance diversity is using cohort or cluster hiring, whereby a college or university hires a group of faculty with common interests, but who come from different disciplinary backgrounds. Institutions including the University of Illinois, University of Chicago, and North Carolina State University have found that a cohort approach to hiring has improved retention of faculty of color, enhanced socialization, and reduced feelings of isolation among faculty of color by providing a "built-in" support network. That "critical mass" of faculty of color also helps build community and increase retention, research shows. This paper describes how Advancement of Female Faculty: Institutional Climate, Recruitment, and Mentoring (AFFIRM) achieved a successful cohort/cluster hire among women of color in STEM. The authors of this paper, who are members of the AFFIRM grant team, believe their process could serve as a useful framework for transforming faculty hires at other campuses, especially at primarily undergraduate institutions (PUIs).
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California (San Diego)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A