Faculty diversity jumps

The number of minority faculty employed by the University increased by 3 percent in 2010, with several schools lagging behind the trend, data from the Office of Diversity and Inclusion shows.

The University employed 279 minority faculty members, representing 22.4 percent of full-time faculty, during the 2010-2011 academic year. Nineteen percent of full-time professors were minorities the year before.

“We are pleased that one of the ways we are strengthening our faculty is by becoming a more diverse faculty,” Terri Reed, vice provost for diversity, said.

The overall boost reflects the University’s initiative to increase diversity on campus, including the formation of the Council on Diversity and Inclusion, and the appointment of Reed to the new vice provost position last spring.

Seventeen percent of full-time professors nationwide were minorities in 2009, according to the most recent data published by the American Council on Education.

“As a core institutional value, we hold the belief that advanced research, scholarship and teaching are strongest when informed by the diversity of viewpoints, backgrounds and experiences,” Reed said.

The most diverse school, with 36.3 percent minority faculty, was the School of Engineering and Applied Science. The School of Business and the School of Medicine and Health Services employed 27.6 and 27.8 percent minority full-time professors, respectively.

But other University schools lagged behind the trend, losing ground in the quest to increase diversity.

The School of Nursing and the College of Professional Studies had the lowest percentages of faculty diversity, with minorities representing 7.1 and 7.7 percent respectively.

Minorities account for just 11.5 percent of the total full-time faculty in the Elliott School of International Affairs – a figure that hasn’t changed since 2009.

The University’s largest school – the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences – employed 80 full-time minority faculty members, a dip from 87 in 2009.

Minority faculty was 59.2 percent Asian, 21.9 percent black and 17.7 percent Hispanic in fall 2009, according to the Office of Institutional Research and Planning. A breakdown is not currently available for fall 2010.

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