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ISU rolling out multi-million dollar Faculty Diversity Enhancement Program

$4.5 million is going into the program, which will take seven years to fully complete.
$4.5 million is going into the program, which will take seven years to fully complete.(WEEK / Heart of Illinois ABC)
Published: Mar. 25, 2022 at 6:34 PM CDT
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NORMAL (WEEK) - Illinois State University is rolling out its multi-million dollar Faculty Diversity Enhancement Program, which will take seven years to complete, and starts with hiring new faculty.

Leaders say the program will bring new, more diverse educators into underrepresented areas.

“Bringing that kind of diversity to a governing body of a college, it would bring better perspectives, and, I would hope, bring down some stereotypes in terms of certain races,” ISU senior Nathan Nomichit said.

$4.5 million is going into the program, funded by the university, Office of the Provost and a mix of other departments - and it all starts with a five-year recruiting phase.

“Then, two years of the seven-year program will really be spent on mentoring, on support … It’s one thing to bring the faculty in, and it’s another to make sure there is a community where these faculty can thrive,” ISU assistant director of media relations Rachel Hatch said.

The program will give the newly-hired educators a chance to focus on a ton of areas, including driving social change, overcoming social inequities, and promoting social and cultural expansion in different educational fields.

“Having students from diverse backgrounds supports the evidence that we want our teachers to think differently and know different ways of teaching,” professor of math education Dr. Edward Mooney said.

Leaders say the program will complement school resources, rather than replace them.

Nomichit adds in his experience, a program like this will only improve the university’s devotion to highlighting different cultures and equality.

“We have a lot to offer. And we have other perspectives we can give,” Nomichit said.

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