SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield Technical Community College has received a $75,000 Massachusetts Higher Education Innovation Fund grant from the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education.
The grant will support professional development for 20 faculty members in an effort to help underserved and underrepresented students beginning with the application process through graduation.
Mary Wiseman, Director of Instructional Innovation and Faculty Investment at STCC, said the funding will help advance the college’s mission to support students as they transform their lives.
“I am very excited to gather faculty, lead them in training on techniques to increase their skills and ultimately lift the equity agenda,” Wiseman said. “We want to explore how to make classrooms inclusive spaces where students feel welcomed and connected to the faculty and curriculum.”
STCC plans to recruit faculty who will join a core coaching group known as Equity Leaders & Guides who will train in equity-minded practices. The faculty will work together to discover new teaching techniques and attend workshop training with the Collaborative for Educational Services, CES Northampton. Upon completion, they will share their findings with STCC colleagues.
The Department of Higher Education this past summer released its Strategic Plan for Racial Equity which outlined the following five strategies:
Establish the Infrastructure to Drive Racial Equity;
Transform Institutional Cultures to be Equity-Minded;
Increase Access to Higher Education for Students of Color;
Build a Culturally Relevant and Civically Engaged Educational Experience for Students of Color; and
Prepare Students of Color to Thrive Beyond Their Time in Higher Education.
STCC has supported a number of diversity, equity and inclusion efforts over recent years, and offers a number of programs to support underserved students.