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University drops hiring requirement in order to increase faculty diversity

Searching for ‘candidates with proven commitments to diversity, equity and inclusion’

The University of California, Davis, is scrapping a hiring requirement as part of its recently instituted drive to increase faculty diversity.

The school “is launching a pilot hiring program that eliminates the requirement — typical in department searches — that candidates have a specific disciplinary specialty,” Inside Higher Ed reports.

The program will be funded with over $400,000 of the school’s $7 million commitment to “expand existing programs to increase faculty diversity.”

As Higher Ed reports, “The idea is that a diverse search will lead to a diverse candidate pool. Instead of a focusing on a particular disciplinary expertise, search teams will look for candidates with proven commitments to diversity, equity and inclusion among underrepresented groups, namely black, Latino, Chicano and Native American applicants.”

Nearly ten colleges, schools and graduate programs at the university are participating in the pilot program. The university “will pay up to $85,000 toward the salary of each hire. Individual schools or colleges will be responsible for pay above that, and the professors’ entire salaries after five years.”

The university’s faculty is currently less than 10 percent “underrepresented minority,” Higher Ed reports. The school is moving toward becoming an Hispanic-serving institution, a designation awarded when “for at least one year, one-quarter of domestic, full-time students [are] Hispanic.”

The University of California, Berkeley, recently announced its intention to become Hispanic-serving. Five of the University of California campuses already hold this title.

Read Higher Ed’s report here.

MORE: Universities continue to hire faculty that meet diversity quotas

IMAGE: Ron Mader / Flickr.com

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