Harvard’s COACHE program spotlighted the FIU Office to Advance Women, Equity, and Diversity in their impact report, recognizing FIU’s efforts in improving recruitment, tenure, and promotion processes for women and faculty of color.
Harvard Graduate School of Education
The Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE) at the Harvard Graduate School of Education is a research-practice partnership and network of peer institutions dedicated to improving outcomes in faculty recruitment, development, and retention. They have partnered with academic leaders at more than 300 colleges, universities, community colleges, and state systems.
FIU has been a longtime partner with COACHE. Many of AWED's inclusivity programs are informed by data collected through COACHE Faculty Job Satisfaction Surveys. This includes programs like the Faculty Mentor Program, which was created in 2012 as a response to a lack of mentorship being named as a primary concern among faculty, especially women faculty, faculty from underrepresented minorities, and associate professors. Further survey results in 2017 revealed increased faculty satisfaction with mentoring due to AWED programming, but also revealed concerns about a lack of clarity surrounding the tenure and promotion process. AWED has since introduced tenure and promotion workshops for faculty.
One AWED program recognized for its impact is the Bystander Leadership Program. COACHE previously recognized AWED’s Bystander Leadership Program in July 2022, highlighting the program’s success. The program is intended to empower faculty to take responsibility in promoting inclusivity and bias recognition in the workplace, which includes education on the different ways to intervene in discriminatory situations. Results show that if 60 percent or more of faculty in a department participated, departmental climate improved.
AWED’s inclusivity programs have led to increased faculty satisfaction in areas such as FIU’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, hiring and retention, and mentoring. This improvement in faculty satisfaction can especially be seen among Black, Hispanic and Latino, and women faculty. Though there is still room for progress, the success of AWED’s inclusivity programs built off COACHE data is undeniable, and can serve as a model for other universities looking to improve in the fields of diversity and inclusion.