Framingham State University, Bridgewater State University, and Worcester State University have received a nearly $3 million grant to create a national model for a state university system to recruit, retain, and promote cohorts of STEM faculty of color, Patch reported.
The grant comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The effort launches July 1 and will span five years.
Framingham is the lead school in this effort, according to FSU spokesperson Daniel Magazu.
Black/African Americans, Hispanics, and Latinx students make up roughly 33% of the U.S. student population in higher ed and 13% of the proportion of earned STEM doctorates, but represent only 9% of the STEM workforce and only 6% of the tenure-track STEM faculty in US higher ed.
“Our faculty demographics do not mirror that of our students who reflect our society but not the STEM workforce,” said Dr. Reema Zeineldin, associate vice president for academic affairs at Framingham State and the lead principal investigator on the grant application.
“Research clearly demonstrates that students of color perform better when they are guided by professors from similar backgrounds and lived experiences," Zeineldin said. "This alliance of three institutions aspires to provide a replicable supportive model on best practices in inclusion and equity for increasing representation and persistence of faculty of color in STEM. We are grateful to the NSF for its support of the effort.”