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Penn State Joins National STEM Diversity Initiative

Penn State is joining 18 universities in entering a three-year program to develop inclusive faculty recruitment, hiring, and retention practices across its STEM programs, the university announced Friday.

The program, “Aspire: The National Alliance for Inclusive & Diverse STEM Faculty,” is co-led by the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU). The APLU has invested $10 million that will help promote more inclusive teaching practices, retain underrepresented faculty, and attract and graduate more minority students.

“Joining the Aspire Alliance will help Penn State to further develop a more diverse and inclusive STEM faculty,” Vice Provost for faculty affairs Kathy Bieschke said. “This effort supports the goal of further diversifying our faculty across the University.”

The first step for Penn State will be working on a self-assessment of its own practices. After that, the university will develop “action plans for advancing faculty diversity.”

Penn State is a part of the third cohort of universities to join the APLU’s Aspire program. Penn State’s joined by several universities, including Pitt, Ohio State, Temple, Minnesota, and Maryland.

Peggy Johnson, Schreyer Honors College’s dean, led Penn State’s proposal team to join the new Aspire cohort. She will work with Eberly College of Science Dean Tracy Langkilde to co-lead the efforts moving forward.

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About the Author

Otis Lyons

Otis is a sophomore majoring in print journalism. He lives just outside of San Francisco, and is a diehard San Jose Earthquakes fan. Unfortunately, that means a lot of sadness. Feel free to send over your soccer hot takes to his twitter @otisnlyons1 and instagram @otislyons

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