Friday, January 6, 2023

The University of Iowa has been selected to be part of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s (HHMI) Inclusive Excellence 3 (IE3) initiative. A six-year, $377,800 grant from HHMI will provide Iowa with resources to further develop inclusive teaching and educational practices for students who have historically been excluded from the sciences.

The IE3 team at Iowa—led by Renée Cole, professor of chemistry and department associate chair—will be focused on making first-year and introductory STEM courses more inclusive through projects centered around three themes:

  • Professional development that emphasizes diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Innovating introductory STEM curriculum.
  • Cultivating peer-to-peer student connections.

This work will align with the “Excellence in Teaching and Learning” priority outlined in the University of Iowa Strategic Plan for 2022—2027 by connecting with efforts such as the Learning at Iowa project, the DEI in Teaching Practice program, and the P3 funded project, “Excellence in Teaching and Learning: Developing a Set of Effective Strategies for Course and Curriculum Innovation”.

Being selected for this initiative further demonstrates Iowa’s commitment to inclusion and emphasis on fostering high-quality teaching and dynamic educational experiences that empower all students to achieve their aspirations.

In total, HHMI awarded more than $60 million in funding to 104 colleges and universities to address issues of inclusion and belonging in STEM education. The IE3 initiative emphasizes a collaborative approach, grouping institutions into seven Learning Community Clusters organized around one of three broad challenges.

Iowa’s funding is part of an $8 million grant divided among 14 institutions in its Learning Community Cluster. In addition to funds allocated to each institution, a portion of the grant will be used to fund activities that promote shared objectives. The members of the learning community will work together to design experiments and regularly share what they are learning from their grant activities.

Learning Community Cluster 2

University of Iowa
Elon University
Fairfield University
Fisk University
Fort Lewis College
Hamilton College (New York)
Oglethorpe University
Otterbein University
Portland State University
Simmons University
University of Alaska Anchorage
University of Minnesota-Morris