Winter 2019 DEI
This semester the DEI Committee is hosting a series of workshops to promote awareness and discussion around topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion within the departmental community. The individual workshops will bring tools to the department members that they can apply towards creating an inclusive workplace. The workshops aim to provide an opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to learn together in the same space, thereby also adding the benefit of a stronger sense of community in the department.
Feb 12, 2019 (10:30 AM-Noon, 340 West Hall)
CRLT “Cuts: Responding to Student Climate Concerns”
Mar 29, 2019 (2:00 PM-3:0 PM, 411 West Hall)
LGBT+ Allyship Training Workshop
(hosted by GoSTEM, SWIP, Physics Department DEI Committee)
This is the second workshop in the new departmental DEI series and is open to all. It will consist of a short introduction to allyship strategies followed by small group discussions of relevant case studies. The training will conclude with a general question and answer portion featuring panelists from physics and related fields. There will also be an opportunity to extend the panelist discussion afterwards.
Past DEI Projects
Graduate and Undergraduate Recruitment
The committee has recognized the lack of diversity of students within the department and has formed two sub-committees to focus on establishing recruitment policies aimed at specifically increasing doctoral program applications and undergraduate major declarations from diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds. In the Fall 2017 Semester, we sent representatives to NSBP, SACNAS, and oSTEM conferences.
MIRA Conversations on Inclusion and Equity
The Physics DEI Committee is proud to be partnering with the Michigan Institute for Research in Astrophysics (MIRA) and their seminar series, Conversations on Inclusions and Equity. Information on previous talks can be found on the MIRA webpage.
Lecture in the recent past: John Pelz on March 21, 2018, 340 West Hall
Title: An MS-to-PhD Physics Bridge Program and Other Activities to Enhance Diversity and Student Support in the Ohio State University Physics Graduate Program
Lack of diversity in physics and other STEM PhD programs is a chronic issue. In recent years, less than 7% of domestic physics PhDs awarded nationwide have gone to students from underrepresented minority (URM) groups, even though they make up 35% of the college age population. Increasing diversity in a physics PhD program can be difficult, especially if the program receives a low number of “traditionally qualified” URM applicants. Inspired by successful STEM Bridge programs at San Francisco State, Fisk-Vanderbilt, and Michigan, the Ohio State University MS-to-PhD Physics Bridge Program (OSU-BP) was established in late 2012 with unanimous faculty support to increase the pool of qualified applicants from underrepresented groups, and accepted its first cohort of four Bridge students in August 2013. I will discuss activities and events that preceded and followed the creation of the OSU-BP, which have coincided with an increase in the representation of URM students in the OSU Physics Ph.D. program from less than 5% of domestic students in 2012 to almost 20% in autumn 2017. These include building a core group of committed faculty colleagues, partnering with the American Physical Society Bridge Program for nationwide recruiting and other support, working with colleagues in Physics Education Research (PER) to develop new graduate physics academic support programs, and expanding holistic PhD admissions practices. I will also discuss on-going and future efforts, opportunities, and obstacles for increasing diversity in graduate programs at OSU and elsewhere. I would like to acknowledge the essential contributions of OSU Bridge Program Co-Director Jay Gupta, PER colleagues Andrew Heckler and Chris Porter, and many other colleagues who worked so hard to help these efforts succeed.
Creation of a Recruiting Brochure
In response to the need to actively increase recruiting efforts targeted towards students from diverse backgrounds, the committee has decided to develop a new recruiting brochure for the graduate programs. Michigan Creative was contracted for its production and also sought content input from current students, faculty, staff, and/or alumni. The brochure is completed, and can be found here.
Development of a 5-Year Strategic Plan
The committee is focusing on building a long-term plan containing policies and best practices based on available research and best practices.