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Purdue commits $75 million to diversify its faculty over the next 5 years

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Posted at 3:23 PM, Nov 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-16 15:23:23-05

WEST LAFAYETTE — Purdue University announced Monday the launch of its largest hiring effort in the institution's history.

In a news release, Purdue said it is committing $75 million to hire 40 full-time faculty members in an effort to diversify the racial makeup of its current staff.

Purdue's Equity Task Force Implementation Team was tasked with the hiring initiative by the Board of Trustees. The 10-member team will have five years to expand the university's staff across several disciplines.

"Our goal is to further enrich and significantly diversify Purdue’s faculty, staff and student body – to maximize the success of all Boilermakers," John Gates, vice provost for Purdue's diversity and inclusion, stated in a release emailed to WRTV. “A more diverse faculty and student body lifts the research and learning enterprise of our entire university. We see an intrinsic connection between diversity and excellence.”

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John Gates, Purdue University's vice provost for diversity and inclusion.

The university's release stated the task force, led by Purdue's vice provost for faculty affairs, Peter Hollenbeck, started its hiring journey this fall focusing on public health.

The force is first seeking to hire 14 new faculty members in policy, equity, communications, nursing, pharmacy and nutrition.

"We're sending the message that Purdue is looking to establish a large footprint in public health," Hollenbeck stated, "that we are taking the necessary steps to expand mentoring and community-building initiatives, and enhancing career development opportunities and professional recognition for diverse faculty members."

Throughout the five-year project, the task force team is going to use "cluster hiring," which Purdue states involves adding faculty into multiple departments, or colleges, around interdisciplinary research topics or clusters.

MORE | Indiana University president announces $30 million fund to diversify its faculty |