As Catholic campuses, we strive to build a true sense of community and oneness based on our understanding that we are all children of God. ACCU member institutions have developed many successful initiatives to bring about greater diversity and a stronger sense of inclusion. Here, we share just a few of those practices that have helped forge vibrant, welcoming campus communities.
Underrepresented students may be the first in their families to pursue a career in fields such as science or technology. Offering them specialized resources can help them achieve their goal. St. Mary’s University (Texas) recently received a $5.3 million grant through the U.S. Department of Education’s Hispanic-Serving Institutions STEM program. The five-year grant will fund creation of new STEM programs and include coaching services for Hispanic students. St. Mary’s has seen significant enrollment gains in undergraduate STEM programs since 2010, especially among Hispanic students.
Villanova University hosts a number of efforts, such as a weeklong Diversity in Engineering camp, designed to introduce STEM topics to students in low-income communities and inspire their interest in related careers. Students are introduced to Villanova’s College of Engineering’s programs like international service learning, Sustainable Engineering and Engineering Entrepreneurship to inspire a diverse population of students form different ethnic and social backgrounds to the traditional fields of engineering.
Over the next few weeks, we will release short examples of diversity at Catholic institutions of Higher Education as part of a series called “Inclusion on Campus”. Stay tuned to hear how Catholic institutions are promoting diversity as an expression of God’s grandeur!