The Commission on Ethnic Minority Recruitment, Retention and Training Task Force (CEMRRTT2) has awarded a $4,000 grant to The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (TCSPP) to develop a pilot program to increase the number of prospective and early career minority psychology faculty. TCSPP will initiate a “Preparing Future Psychology Faculty Program” designed to enhance the pipeline of minority psychology doctoral students and early career faculty for successful careers in the psychology profession in response to the rapidly changing trends in higher education and society, which demand a multi-cultural faculty.
Although there has been a substantial increase in the numbers of minority students receiving a doctorate in psychology in the previous generation, the percentages of the minority psychology doctorates who actually became faculty has not significantly increased. The pilot project will be initiated at TCSPP’s Washington, DC Campus, but will be transferable to the institution’s Chicago and California campuses in Los Angeles, Westwood and Irvine.
Orlando L Taylor, Ph.D., President of TCSPP’s Washington, DC Campus, will lead the project. A national leader in the Preparing Future Faculty movement, and a former Dean of the Graduate School and Vice Provost for Research at Howard University, Dr. Taylor founded and led a pilot initiative for over 17 years at the university, which became nationally recognized. Dr. Taylor will be joined on the pilot program by Dr. Cynthia Winston, Associate Professor of Psychology at Howard University and a Visiting Scholar at TCSPP.
“The training of multi-ethnic faculty members must be a national priority if we are to adequately address the mental health needs of a changing demographic in the U.S. Despite our best intentions, we have failed to prepare a sufficient number of minority faculty at a time when over a third of our nation’s total population are persons of color,” Dr. Taylor said.
The diversity of college and university faculties has been a subject of discussion, debate and priority for several decades--particularly since the 1960s when equity in higher education became a national priority as a result of the civil rights movement. Despite these discussions and the launch of local and national programs to advance faculty diversity, the national report card remains unacceptably poor.
According to recent data from the National Center for Education Statistics, approximately only 15% of the nation’s professoriate consists of persons of color, although people of color are about 50% of the American population and will continue to grow. About 6% of college/university faculty members are reportedly Asian Americans (not considered underrepresented by federal agencies), 5% African American, 3% Hispanic and 1% Native American and other underrepresented minority groups.
Even more disturbing, the presence of underrepresented minorities (URMs) is less than 10% in certain disciplines such as Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Dr. Donna J. Nelson, a professor of chemistry at the University of Oklahoma, provides startling statistics to make this point. In assessing the presence of underrepresented minorities--and women—in several disciplines at the nation’s top 50 research universities, she found several cases where an extremely low percentage of underrepresented minorities populate the faculties of these institutions. These universities produce the lion’s share of the nation’s Ph.D. graduates, many of whom join the nation’s professoriate.
While some graduate psychology students have populated “Preparing Future Faculty” (PFF) programs across the country (including at Howard), most programs have been conducted independently of specific discipline. However, there has not been a PFF program specifically designed for young psychology future and junior faculty of color.
About The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Founded in 1979, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (TCSPP) is the nation's leading nonprofit graduate school dedicated exclusively to the applications of psychology and related behavioral sciences. The school is an active member of the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology, which has recognized TCSPP for its distinguished service and outstanding contributions to cultural diversity and advocacy. The school's community service initiatives have resulted in five consecutive years of recognition on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, including the additional "With Distinction" honor in 2012. Campuses are located in Chicago and Grayslake, Illinois; Los Angeles, Westwood, and Irvine, California; and in Washington, D.C. For more information about The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, visit www.thechicagoschool.edu. Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/gradpsychology. Follow us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/thechicagoschool.