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Accolades & Honors

Pitt received a seed grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

The Cathedral of Learning

The University of Pittsburgh is among 10 U.S. schools to receive a grant to make STEM doctoral programs more equitable from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The awards, totaling $2.5 million, aim remove entrenched barriers, improve student outcomes and create educational environments that are more effective and equitable for all.

Each institution has received a two-year, $250,000 seed grant to develop plans and begin implementation of evidence-based policies and practices that will advance a mission of equitable and diverse physical science and engineering doctoral programs with a focus on improving recruitment, retention and graduation outcomes.

Vice Provost for Graduate Studies Amanda Godley will lead the initiative for Pitt as principal investigator, along with co-PIs Adam Leibovich, Bettye J. and Ralph E. Bailey Dean of the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences and College of General Studies; Sanjeev Shroff, distinguished professor and Gerald E. McGinnis Chair in Bioengineering; Jen Iriti, assistant vice chancellor for research inclusion and outreach strategy; and Alydia Thomas, associate director of diversity, equity and inclusion for graduate studies in the Office of the Provost.

At the end of a successful two-year seed grant period, institutions will be eligible to apply for four-year, $1.4 million implementation grants from the foundation, which include scholarship funds for students in participating departments.

The grants mark the first step of the Sloan Foundation’s multiyear, $30 million commitment. Selected through a competitive nationwide search, the nine other award recipients are: 

  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of Colorado, Boulder
  • University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • The Ohio State University
  • Portland State University
  • Purdue University
  • University of Texas, El Paso
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University
  • University of Wisconsin, Madison

The goal of this work is the systemic reform of structures that disproportionately burden Black, Indigenous and Latino individuals in graduate education, barriers that can affect other students as well. In addition to the grant award, Sloan is supporting each institution’s participation in the Equity in Graduate Education Consortium, a networked improvement community that equips participants with research, tools and change management strategies to achieve systemic change.