$50 million to be precise – all to increase the diversity among its faculty. The current stats for Yale have them at 39.5% female faculty and 22.5% minority faculty members.
“Yale’s education and research missions are propelled forward by a faculty that stands at the forefront of scholarship, research, practice, mentoring, and teaching. An excellent faculty in all of these dimensions is a diverse faculty, and that diversity must reach across the whole of Yale,” explained President Peter Salovey and Provost Ben Polak.
Yale is not the first to create or fund such initiatives either, earlier this year Columbia pledged $30 million, even though they are among the most diverse of ivy-league faculties at 41% women and 26% minorities. The University of Pennsylvania pledged $50 million in 2011, and Harvard pledged $50 million in 2005.
Money pledged to fund new programs and classes relates to diversity, training of minority and women educators, and a teaching academy to train future teachers.
In our world of political correctness, it’s a good move for colleges to voluntarily fund and create more diverse faculties matching with the more diverse student bodies. Though it might also be interesting to learn what the percentages are when it comes to the students since minorities implies the groups make up less of the population. How much of an increase needs to happen and are there specific minorities needing more representation than others? With women making up approximately 50% of the population, it’s easy to figure the numbers there. Presumably ethnic minorities will be joined by other types of minorities such as LGBT educators.
Until the goal is a little better defined, it seems more of a way to placate than an actual effort. Pledging funds is great – giving a broad overview may not be all that helpful.