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Old Dominion University Launches Program to Address Lack of Minority Faculty

Old Dominion University’s (ODU) Darden College of Education and Professional Studies is launching a program to help address disparities in the number of minorritized higher ed faculty.Old Dominion University’Old Dominion University

ODU’s Holmes Scholars program – its primary goal is equity, diversity and cultural competence in higher ed and PK-12 schools – will offer mentorship, peer support, and professional development. Those selected will receive a full tuition/fee waiver and $25,000 from Darden College, allowing students to fulfill program requirements such as travel to the annual AACTE national conference and the Holmes Summer Policy Institute and Day on the Hill.

Less than 10% of higher ed faculty identify as African American, Latinx or Native American/Alaskan Native, according to the American Association for Colleges of Teachers Association (AACTE).

The priority deadline for applications for the two- to three-person initial cohort is Dec. 1. To be eligible, applicants must be a second-year Ph.D. student with 18 completed credit hours who identify as racially and ethnically diverse.

The AACTE-affiliated program will start Spring 2024.

“Oftentimes, at universities that strive to be inclusive but happen to be predominantly white institutions, there are just not as many students that are connected,” said Dr. Shuntay Tarver, an associate professor in the Department of Counseling and Human Services and director of ODU’s Holmes program. “It’s really helpful and impactful to be connected to people who are in similar situations. So, this is the program where we say, ‘Let’s connect with other doc students, not just at ODU, but nationally.”

The Darden College will also host at least two professional development conferences per semester – designed for Holmes Scholars and with mentoring from Holmes Faculty Scholars – open to all doctoral students.


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