William Paterson University Announces New Pre-Doctoral Fellows Program to Advance Faculty Diversity in Higher Education

William Paterson University is launching a new fellowship program to advance diversity in higher education by supporting doctoral or terminal degree candidates from underrepresented backgrounds as they launch academic careers and complete their dissertations or degree requirements.

Doctoral candidates from across the nation are eligible to apply for a fellowship, which would begin at William Paterson in August 2021, in the fields of management, marketing and sales, educational leadership, psychology, communication disorders, or music.

“As a public university serving a highly diverse student population, we are launching this unique fellowship program to support the development of emerging faculty from underrepresented groups who desire a career at an institution that emphasizes teaching quality and encourages multiple forms of scholarship,” says William Paterson University Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Joshua Powers. “Our goal is to assure long-term faculty growth that reflects the diversity of the students we serve on our campus and throughout higher education.”

Academic departments on campus that are hosting fellows commit to mentoring them and to providing them similar levels of research support as they would for tenure-track faculty. The fellows will teach in the department and participate in a cohort experience intended to position them for success in a tenure-track faculty appointment at William Paterson University or other institution of higher education.

“At William Paterson University, we are proud to be federally recognized as both a Hispanic Serving Institution and Minority Serving Institution with a firm to commitment creating and sustaining a campus culture of inclusion,” says William Paterson University Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Talent Management David Jones. “This fellowship program demonstrates our University’s shared goal to build a more diverse teaching faculty by supporting the growth of diverse doctoral students.” 

“National research highlights the value of institutions investing in career success initiatives such as our new program,” adds William Paterson University Associate Provost Kara Rabbitt. “Our pre-doctoral fellows program will provide mentoring and other experiences to support the selected participants as they simultaneously advance their instructional skills and scholarly plans.”

Lori Patton Davis, Ohio State University, was the keynote speaker for the University’s program launch during a webinar and information session, which drew 350 participants. The University plans to appoint five fellows for fall 2021. Review of candidate materials will begin February 8. 

Learn more about the pre-doctoral fellows program, watch the information session, and apply at www.wpunj.edu/pre-doctoral.