Grant to Bolster Inclusion in the Life Sciences at NC State

Life sciences survey class at NC State

Life sciences survey class at NC State

Two colleges with life sciences programs at NC State – CALS and the College of Sciences – have teamed up to win a $1 million Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant. Their goal: to improve the inclusion of students from diverse backgrounds in science education.

“We want to cultivate an enhanced sense of belonging and self-efficacy in science among all our students and to increase student persistence and success,” said Vicki Martin, the project’s principal investigator and assistant director of CALS Academic Programs. “These Inclusive Excellence grants are prestigious awards and will engage a lot of people working together across the campus of NC State, HHMI and other institutions across the country.”

Other co-PIs on the grant are Jane Lubischer, Lisa Parks and Jason Flores, all members of COS’ biological sciences faculty.

Here Martin’s summary of key project objectives:

  • Inclusive Excellence at NC State (IE-NC) will create synergies between campus experts on inclusivity and faculty dedicated to high impact pedagogical practices to transform the academic and support environments for all life science students at NC State, with an emphasis on transfer and first-year students. Through faculty development, proactive advising, peer mentoring, outreach to community college students, and IE-transformed courses built into the required curriculum, we will build and institutionalize a culture of inclusive excellence at NC State.
  • IE-NC will enhance inclusive excellence training in Peer Mentor programs already in place to support all transfer and first-year students in the life sciences, as well as students at Wake Tech Community College who plan to study the life sciences at NC State.
  • IE-NC will expand proactive advising to include all life science transfer students, and will work with North Carolina community colleges to better communicate with potential transfer students and to create program-specific paths-to-degree that integrate across the community college and NC State curricula.
  • IE-NC will train 60 IE Faculty Scholars on inclusive excellence pedagogy and an additional 20 IE Faculty CURE Scholars to develop new IE CUREs (courses incorporating authentic research experiences in an inclusive environment). Through new and revised courses, IE-NC expects to directly impact some 10,000 students over the next five years. IE-NC training programs and an IE-NC lecture series also will be institutionalized to continue after the end of this grant.

Learn More About the HHMI’s Inclusive Excellence Grants.