National Institutes of Health awards $16 million grant to Northwestern for supporting underrepresented faculty recruitment


Daily file photo by Katie Pach

The Feinberg School of Medicine. The five-year grant will allow Northwestern to hire 15 tenure-track faculty members as a part of a new program.

The National Institutes of Health awarded a $16 million grant to Northwestern to fund hiring more faculty to research cancer, cardiovascular and brain and behavioral sciences, the University announced Tuesday.

The five-year grant will allow NU to hire 15 tenure-track faculty members as a part of a new NU Recruitment to Transform Under-Representation and achieve Equity program. The initiative will deploy strategies to help faculty members from underrepresented populations succeed.

“This grant is an amazing dream come true,” project leader and Feinberg Prof. Dr. Melissa Simon said in a news release. “I have traversed the entire academe over 17 years here at Northwestern and am excited for the opportunity to lead substantive change in the institution with how we recruit, hire, onboard, support and retain diverse faculty.”

The NIH Common Fund’s Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation program will fund the NURTURE initiative. One of FIRST’s aims is to enhance the development of inclusive environments in the biomedical research community.

The grant will also support three core centers — evaluation, faculty development and administrative — to enhance the NURTURE program’s activities.

“Our stated awareness of the need for more diversity and our promises to lead change are now made manifest by NURTURE,” Feinberg Vice Dean for Diversity and Inclusion Dr. Clyde Yancy said in the release. “This is how real change happens with an intentional focus on diversity and a suite of processes creating a community appropriate for success.”

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