Grant funding will continue research and development rooted in strategic equity initiatives for female faculty in STEM disciplines

MURRAY, Ky. — Murray State University has been awarded a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation for a proposal led by the institution’s ADVANCE leadership team to promote strategic equity initiatives for female faculty members within science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines.

“We are very excited to continue our ADVANCE work to support women faculty in STEM,” said Dr. Maeve McCarthy, interim assistant dean of the Jesse D. Jones College of Science, Engineering and Technology. “It is a great honor for Murray State to be chosen by the National Science Foundation.”

Continued research and initiatives through this grant and adaptation project will include interactive theatre modules to address implicit bias in search, tenure and promotion processes, incorporating programs to improve the retention and advancement of female faculty, the adaptation of programs from peer institutions, the creation of a President’s Work-Life task force and an overall focus on the identification and elimination of barriers that impede the full participation and advancement of diverse faculty at academic institutions. 

“This grant will help us continue to recruit and retain excellent women STEM faculty at Murray State,” said Dr. Claire Fuller, dean of the College of Science, Engineering and Technology. “I am especially excited that theatre faculty from the College of Humanities and Fine Arts will be involved with training modules, making this an effort that extends beyond the sciences.”

Murray State University has been awarded a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation for a proposal led by the institution’s ADVANCE leadership team to promote strategic equity initiatives for female faculty members within science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines.

In addition to Fuller and McCarthy, co-principal investigators include Dr. Robin Zhang, chair of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences; Dr. David Balthrop, dean of the College of Humanities and Fine Arts; and Dr. Paula Waddill, chair of the Department of Psychology.

“The recruitment, retention and engagement of a diverse faculty is essential to Murray State University’s strategic goals and mission,” said Murray State President Dr. Bob Jackson. “The continued work of the ADVANCE leadership team holds a tremendous amount of potential not only for Murray State, but for other institutions as well. This $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation is significant and will provide continued forward movement and progress in the area of gender equity among faculty.”

For more information on the ADVANCE initiative, please visit murraystate.edu/advance.

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