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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University April 7, 2008 | Vol. 37 No. 29
JHU to Invest $5 Million in Diversity Faculty Hires

Goal is to create a mosaic of the best and brightest

By Dennis O'Shea

The Johns Hopkins University will provide at least $5 million over the next five years in matching funds for departments seeking to improve diversity, including hiring and retaining outstanding women and underrepresented minority scholars for faculty positions.

The initial funding for the Mosaic Initiative, as the pilot program will be called, comes from the offices of President William R. Brody and Provost Kristina M. Johnson. The university will also seek additional funding from outside sources. Among those who have already committed to the effort is the Society of Black Alumni.

"The initiative will support the recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty, including women and individuals of color," Johnson said in announcing the program to the university community. "Our aim is to create a mosaic of the best and the brightest faculty across all our schools and in all our disciplines, a mosaic including rising stars interested in becoming part of the intellectual life of this great institution."

Johnson said that she and Brody believe that recruiting a faculty of leading scholars that also reflects America's diversity is essential to accomplishing the university's mission of teaching, research, patient care and service.

The university has worked hard to recruit women and minority faculty and has made some good progress, she said. This academic year, Johns Hopkins has 206 more women and 45 more members of underrepresented minorities on its full-time faculty of 3,519 than it did four years ago.

Still, she said, women account for only 38 percent of full-time faculty and fewer than 20 percent of full professors. Underrepresented minorities account for only 6 percent of the full-time faculty and fewer than 4 percent of full professors.

"A university with our commitment to diversity must do more," Johnson said. "I am pleased that the university's deans and directors are enthusiastic in their support of the Mosaic Initiative. All of us believe that a diverse faculty is essential to Johns Hopkins' future success. All of us believe that a diverse faculty is crucial in attracting the best and brightest students to pursue their scholarly and professional goals at our university."

The Mosaic Initiative will be funded initially at a minimum of $1 million per year. A department may apply for funds to the dean or director of its division, who will prioritize requests and forward them to the provost. Departments may make proposals for up to $250,000, to be spent over three years on such items as salary, research support and laboratory equipment. Funds will be allocated on a rolling basis; allocation will continue as long as dollars are available in any recruiting year.

Applications are being accepted immediately for funds to be spent in the academic year that starts July 1.


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