GVSU aims to promote diversity and inclusivity in faculty

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Felix Ngassa teaches in Grand Valley State University's chemistry department. Courtesy Amanda Pitts

Grand Valley State University is one of 19 universities in the country to join the third cohort of Aspire: The National Alliance for Inclusive & Diverse STEM Faculty.

The alliance is designed to develop inclusive teaching practices and increase diversity among STEM faculty members over three years. It is co-led by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities and the University of Wisconsin-Madison with funding from the National Science Foundation.

GVSU will begin by doing a self-assessment of current practices and assets. The university will then develop and implement campus action plans to drive change and scale efforts across all its STEM programs.

“Increasing the recruitment and persistence of underrepresented students in STEM fields begins with sharpening our inclusive teaching practices and improving the diversity of faculty members,” said Christine Rener, vice provost for Instructional Development and Innovation and director of the Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center at GVSU. “By participating in the Aspire Alliance, we will learn about the evidence-based best practices from other institutions and have opportunities to participate in professional development.”

The other institutions in the new cohort are:

  • Appalachian State University
  • California Polytechnic State University
  • Jackson State University
  • Lehigh University
  • Louisiana Tech University
  • Mississippi State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Stevens Institute of Technology
  • Temple University
  • The Ohio State University
  • University of California, Santa Barbara
  • University of Denver
  • University of Louisiana at Lafayette
  • University of Maryland, College Park
  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • Utah State University
  • Virginia Tech

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