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Hamilton College, 13 others awarded Howard Hughes Medical Institute funding

By Eric Reinhardt (


Hamilton College in Clinton is among 14 institutions that will use a total of more than $8 million in grant funding from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) of Chevy Chase, Maryland. The funding is part of HHMI’s InclusiveExcellence 3 (IE3) initiative targeting students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. (Photo credit: Adam J. Brockway)

CLINTON, N.Y. — The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) has awarded Hamilton College and 13 other institutions a total of $8.05 million in grant funding.

The awards are part of HHMI’s InclusiveExcellence 3 (IE3) initiative, titled “Increasing Capacity to Support Equitable and Inclusive Learning Environments for Introductory-level STEM Students across the LCC2 Learning Community.” HHMI is located in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

IE3 challenges colleges and universities to continue their work to support inclusion of all students in science, especially for those who have been “historically excluded” from the sciences.

The awardees will each receive about $377,000 in funds, and HHMI will apply $2.7 million collectively, Hamilton College said in its Tuesday announcement.

“Sustaining advances in diversity and inclusion requires a scientific culture that is centered on equity,” Blanton Tolbert, HHMI’s VP of science leadership and culture, said. “In science education, increasing the number of individuals from underrepresented backgrounds must go hand in hand with creating inclusive learning environments in which everyone can thrive.”

Funding is focused on developing pedagogy (method of practice and teaching) for increasing completion rates for underrepresented students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields with particular attention to minorities, first-generation students, and women.

The 14 institutions will be involved in three major projects over the next six years and beyond to create “safe, equitable, and supportive” teaching and learning communities; support ongoing curricular redesign to achieve inclusive excellence in introductory STEM courses; and build peer-to-peer student cultures of support in STEM.

The other 13 institutions include Elon University, Fairfield University, Fisk University, Fort Lewis College, Oglethorpe University, Otterbein University, Portland State University, Simmons University, University of Alaska Anchorage, University of Iowa, University of Minnesota-Morris, University of New Mexico, and Xavier University.