Faculty First Look:  An NYU Steinhardt Higher Education Success Initiative

By mentoring a select group of fellows from underrepresented groups, Steinhardt’s Faculty First Look program is building a recruitment pipeline of diverse applicants for the academic job market.

Steinhardt’s 2017-2018 Faculty First Look scholars.

“First generation faculty of color and those from underserved backgrounds have taken on the great challenge of entering the academy with enormous skill sets in their fields, but often without information on how to navigate the actual culture of the academy,” says Stella Flores, Steinhardt associate dean for faculty development and diversity.

To build that skill-set, Flores convenes Faculty First Look, a program that brings doctoral students to Washington Square for a glimpse into what it takes to prepare for a future faculty career, particularly in fields and disciplines within the Steinhardt School.  Fellows receive one-on-one mentoring — from application to negotiation — and take part in workshops featuring NYU Steinhardt faculty and deans, as well as other successful men and women and faculty of color in leadership positions across the university.

Faculty First Look is part of Steinhardt Dean Dominic Brewer commitment to increase diversity in recruitment by building a pipeline for future faculty of color.  This institutional priority consists of a multi-year plan and a commitment of resources to expand the pool of competitive candidates from underrepresented groups.

Flores noted that this year’s application pool was extremely competitive, a sign that a “phenomenal group of underrepresented scholars” will be entering the field of higher education in the next few years.

“This is a very promising look into the future of representation in the academy should institutions be looking to have a faculty more representative of the students in their colleges and universities and the nation at large,” Flores said. “NYU Steinhardt’s commitment is to help close the gap by bringing in more diverse faculty, not only to our own institution, but more broadly to higher education.”