Cornell University Provost Michael Kotlikoff recently announced increases in spending to enhance the recruitment of diverse faculty and provide ongoing support to retain faculty from underrepresented groups. This additional funding will bring total spending toward recruiting and retaining diverse faculty to more than $60 million over the next five years.
One of the most significant increases in spending makes it easier for departments to be competitive when hiring faculty by increasing central funding to support salaries of faculty recruited to Cornell who will enhance the diversify of their departments. This support increased from 25 percent to 75 percent for the next five years. This funding could support 12 new faculty members each year.
Provost Kotlikoff has committed central funding to a new Presidential Faculty Fellows program that will identify the most talented young scholars through faculty searches and provide them with fellowships and support them during the completion of their training hopefully leading to their appointments to the faculty at Cornell. Additionally, the Presidential Postdoctoral Program will be expanded to include annual fellowships to those underrepresented in their academic fields.
The university will also increase retention efforts through central and departmental funding. This will include awards recognizing campus leadership in diversity, resources for travel to attend conferences, and networking opportunities to help integrate diverse faculty with their peers on campus.
“We want to foster an environment that attracts faculty from all backgrounds, ethnicities and perspectives, seeks out scholars of diverse viewpoints, and encourages them to pursue their careers at Cornell for the long term,” Dr. Kotlikoff said. “That environment is dependent on all of us already at Cornell welcoming our new colleagues and promoting an inclusive community in which all faculty can succeed, as well as recognizing and rewarding the contributions of all faculty to the university as a whole.”