Published May 07, 2015

$8.1 million grant

Monmouth College to share in Mellon funds through ACM/CIC partnership
Monmouth College will participate in a higher education partnership that will use an $8.1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to encourage students from underrepresented backgrounds to consider careers as college professors.
 
The unprecedented partnership between the Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM), of which Monmouth is a member, and the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC), a consortium of Big Ten universities and the University of Chicago, seeks to expand participation in the career pipeline from college student to college professor through a series of individual and collaborative programs.
 
The seven-year initiative, called the Undergraduate and Faculty Fellows Program for a Diverse Professoriate, brings together the 14 liberal arts colleges in the ACM with the CIC’s 15 research universities to build multiple levels of connection among the institutions, their students and faculty. The grant will allow the two consortia to launch a program that encourages students from underrepresented backgrounds to participate in new initiatives to help college students prepare for graduate school and consider careers teaching at liberal arts colleges.
 
“The student demographics of college attendance have shifted dramatically, making it more and more important for institutions to encourage minority student achievement and representation in the professorate in the present and future,” said MC’s dean of faculty, David Timmerman, who served on the ACM Dean’s Grant Writing Committee for the grant and has been asked to serve on the implementation committee. “The basic idea of the grant is a wonderful and unusual collaboration among ACM schools and CIC schools.”
 
He explained that the grant has three principal parts:  a program for undergraduates at ACM schools, a program for minority graduate students completing advanced degrees at the CIC schools and a program of collaborative events between the two school types.
 
“One of the most remarkable features of American higher education since 1950 is its democratization,” observed Mellon’s president, Earl Lewis. “The number of colleges and universities has doubled, the number of first-time enrolled students has grown sevenfold, and access has increased significantly. As we look to the future, it remains for the academy to develop an ever more diverse pool of talent that matches this continued democratization. This grant aids in that effort and it serves as a model for collaboration between the liberal arts college and research university sectors.”
 
The program will help the ACM member institutions attract new Ph.Ds interested in helping the colleges strengthen diversity on their campuses through a new program of faculty fellowships. Funds will also underwrite workshops to help colleges use inclusive hiring practices.
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