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Stony Brook Creates Alliance to Advance Underrepresented Minority Faculty

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Academic leaders of the NSF-funded AGEP career development program include faculty from Stony Brook University (SBU), Farmingdale State College (FSC) and Suffolk County Community College (SCCC). From left: Candice Foley (SCCC), Ken White (Brookhaven National Laboratory), Karian Wright (SBU), David Ferguson (SBU), Julianna Pryor (SBU), Erwin Cabrerra (FSC), Toni Sperzel (SBU), and Erica Lobello (FSC).
Academic leaders of the NSF-funded AGEP career development program include faculty from Stony Brook University (SBU), Farmingdale State College (FSC) and Suffolk County Community College (SCCC). From left: Candice Foley (SCCC), Ken White (Brookhaven National Laboratory), Karian Wright (SBU), David Ferguson (SBU), Julianna Pryor (SBU), Erwin Cabrerra (FSC), Toni Sperzel (SBU), and Erica Lobello (FSC).

STONY BROOK, NY, March 21 , 2019 –  With funding from a $1.7 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Stony Brook University Center for Inclusive Education is leading an alliance between Stony Brook University, Farmingdale State College, and Suffolk County Community College to provide career development for historically underrepresented minority (URM) doctoral degree students in STEM with the goal to successfully transition them into faculty positions at predominantly undergraduate institutions. The program involves developing, implementing, studying, institutionalizing, evaluating and disseminating an educational and training model to achieve this goal.

The NSF funding for the career development program is made possible by its Alliances for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) and will be distributed over the course of five years ending late in 2023. The program supports current doctoral students at Stony Brook University who have a career goal to become tenured faculty. The support begins with training and mentorship during their doctoral program and continues after graduation and during the first three years of their faculty appointment.

Universities and colleges struggle to recruit, retain, and promote URM STEM faculty who serve as role models and academic leaders for URM students to learn from, work with, and emulate. The AGEP has the potential to advance a model to improve the success of URM early career STEM faculty in predominantly undergraduate institutions, which ultimately leads to improved academic mentorship for URM undergraduate students in STEM at community college, two-year academic institutions, and other undergraduate institutions.

“This AGEP initiative is set up for success because of the range of faculty expertise involved from multiple institutions and the talented pool of doctoral students who need support and mentoring as they launch their academic careers,” says David L. Ferguson, PhD, Project Director and Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of Technology and Society in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Stony Brook University.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) is a sub-recipient of the NSF grant. BNL will provide opportunities for program participants to increase competitiveness by employing the use of DOE facilities in their research and developing collaborations between predominantly undergraduate institutions faculty and Federally Funded Research and Development Centers. The Alliance is also working with an assessment team at the Center for Advanced Study of Education at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center.

For more specifics on the award (NSF grant number 1821083) see this abstract.

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About Stony Brook University

Stony Brook University, widely regarded as a SUNY flagship, is going beyond the expectations of what today’s public universities can accomplish.  Since its founding in 1957, this young university has grown to become one of only four University Center campuses in the State University of New York (SUNY) system with more than 25,700 students and 2,500 faculty members, and 18 NCAA Division I athletic programs. Our faculty have earned numerous prestigious awards, including the Nobel Prize, Pulitzer Prize, Indianapolis Prize for animal conservation, Abel Prize and the inaugural Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics. The University offers students an elite education with an outstanding return on investment: U.S.News & World Report ranks Stony Brook among the top 50 public universities in the nation. Its membership in the Association of American Universities (AAU) places Stony Brook among the top 62 research institutions in North America. As part of the management team of Brookhaven National Laboratory, the University joins a prestigious group of universities that have a role in running federal R&D labs. Stony Brook University is a driving force in the region’s economy, generating nearly 60,000 jobs and an annual economic impact of $6.4 billion. Our state, country and world demand ambitious ideas, imaginative solutions and exceptional leadership to forge a better future for all. The students, alumni, researchers and faculty of Stony Brook University are prepared to meet this challenge.

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