IU President Pamela Whitten announced a $30 million fund Tuesday to focus on hiring a more diverse community of faculty and researchers.
In her blog Written by Whitten, IU’s first female president announced a seven-year Presidential Diversity Hiring Initiative focused on hiring professors in a broad range of disciplines from underrepresented groups in higher education.
Whitten said IU will fund new faculty positions as part of the initiative with reallocated resources from IU’s non-academic services and external gifts. She said the hirings will fill these new positions in addition to existing open roles.
“Now is the time to provide our students with access to world-class teachers and researchers from multiple perspectives,” she said in the blog.
The IU Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs will manage the effort, Whitten said.
According to the office’s 2020 annual report, 305 tenured and tenure-track faculty of color worked at IU-Bloomington in 2018, representing less than 23% of the faculty for that year.
IU Board of Trustees chair Quinn Buckner said the university’s commitment to hiring a more diverse faculty will benefit IU and Indiana, according to an IU press release.
“This ambitious initiative sparked by President Whitten will advance a new generation of scholars, and we will all be better for it,” Buckner said in the release.
Since assuming her position, Whitten prioritized increasing the diversity of faculty, staff and students. IU enrolled 10,853 students of color this year, representing a record 27% of the student body.