Outreach to Underrepresented Groups

Minority representation in the sciences, in general, and Evolutionary Biology, in particular, is extremely low. At NESCent we feel strongly that increasing minority representation in Evolutionary Biology is critical if the field is to flourish and serve the needs and interests of a diverse community of learners. To that end, NESCent/EOG has several projects and activities focused on various aspects of minority outreach in the evolutionary sciences.

NESCent/EOG Minority Outreach efforts include:

  • Evolution Education at Historically Minority Universities (EEHMU) Working Group - EEHMU is a working group assembled by the EOG to bring together minority serving institution (MSI) faculty who teach evolution, in order to explore challenges they face and try to identify ways in which NESCent might contribute to addressing those challenges.
  • NESCent Targeted Sabbatical for MSI Faculty - Each year, NESCent offers one sabbatical position to a faculty member from a minority serving institution. The goal is to offer these individuals an opportunity to spend a year working on a project of their own design which will further the broad goals of increasing minority presence in evolutionary biology and enhance the teaching and learning of evolution among under-represented students. The 2005-2006 targeted sabbatarian was Dr. John Clamp, from North Carolina Central University in Durham, NC. The 2006-2007 targeted sabbatarians is Dr. Joseph Fail, from Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, NC. To read more about them and their projects, please click on their names.
  • Bringing Together MSIs and Evolution Graduate & Research Programs One of Dr. John Clamp’s targeted sabbatical projects (see above) was the creation of databases which create a conduit of information and communication between under-represented minority students and universities offering graduate programs and research opportunities, with the ultimate goal of increasing minority representation in evolutionary biology. To read more about this project and access the databases he compiled, please click here.

NESCent is always interested in increasing our involvement in minority outreach. If you have ideas or suggestions of ways to do this, please feel free to contact us.