Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Wisconsin Science Training Programs Recognized for Diversity Efforts

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Wisconsin Science Training Programs Recognized for Diversity Efforts

Article excerpt

MADISON, WIS.

The National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), part of the National Institutes of Health, recently highlighted three University of Wisconsin-Madison training programs among the top in the country when it comes to recruiting and retaining underrepresented minority students.

Currently, NIGMS funds 292 research programs at both the graduate and postdoctoral level. A priority of the funding agency is to encourage the participation of underrepresented minority students in biomedical and behavioral research. The students include African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians, Alaskan Natives and Pacific Islanders.

UW-Madison was recognized for the percentage of these students enrolled in its NIGMS-funded Chemistry-Biology Interface Predoctoral Program (27 percent), Molecular Biosciences Training Grant (16 percent) and Neuroscience Training Program (16 percent).

Dr. Ann Kelley, psychiatry professor and director of the neuroscience program, says this particular NIGMS program owes much of its success in recruiting and retaining underrepresented minority students to its faculty, many of whom are dedicated to teaching and mentoring.

Few of the faculty iii this program are themselves minorities, says Kelley, but many of them attend national conferences for minority students or scientists, distribute program brochures at undergraduate career fairs or host minority summer research students--all in an effort to draw these students to UW-Madison.

Once here, Kelley says the program does its best to create a community in which the underrepresented minority students feel that they belong. …

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