Hamilton College Awarded Howard Hughes Medical Institute Funding
Hamilton College is one of 14 institutions across the country to receive the $8 million Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) grant. Hamilton will receive approximately $377,000 in funding from HHMI as part of their IE3 initiative titled, “Increasing Capacity to Support Equitable and Inclusive Learning Environments for Introductory-level STEM Students across the LCC2 Learning Community.”
IE3 encourages colleges and universities to support inclusion of all students in science, specifically those who have historically been excluded from sciences.
“Sustaining advances in diversity and inclusion requires a scientific culture that is centered on equity,” said Blanton Tolbert, HHMI’s vice president of science leadership and culture. “In science education, increasing the number of individuals from underrepresented backgrounds must go hand in hand with creating inclusive learning environments in which everyone can thrive.”
The college says that funding focuses on completion rates for students who are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, with a specific focus on first-generation students, women and minorities.
Over the next six years, each of the 14 institutions will focus on three major projects:
1) create safe, equitable, and supportive teaching and learning communities,
2) support ongoing curricular redesign to achieve inclusive excellence in introductory
STEM courses, and
3) build peer-to-peer student cultures of support in STEM.
"Our commitment to inclusive excellence at Hamilton emphasizes faculty and staff having access to professional development and resources to integrate inclusive practices throughout the curriculum, classroom, and research opportunities so that every student has the chance to reach their full potential in their STEM pathway," said Co-Program Directors Nathan Goodale and Siobhan Robinson.
Hamilton will begin by reaching out to the College's STEM community to support the projects. According to a release from the College, as Hamilton develops the curriculum, the goal is that the work will filter throughout the curriculum in accordance with all institutional DEI goals.
Other institution which received the grant include Elon University, Fairfield University, Fisk University, Fort Lewis College, Oglethorpe University, Otterbein University, Portland State University, Simmons University, University of Alaska Anchorage, University of Iowa, University of Minnesota-Morris, University of New Mexico, and Xavier University.
Hamilton has volunteered to take a lead role in the development and implementation of the program.