The Indiana University Kelley School of Business will today host all 14 Big Ten schools for a virtual event that aims to encourage more women and people from underrepresented backgrounds to enter business academia. IU says the webinar series is an effort to create awareness about the potential for students to pursue doctoral programs. The event will focus on the benefits of pursuing a career in academia and the steps to take for those who are interested.
In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Kelley School Chair of Doctoral Programs Rebecca Slotegraaf said there are several key reasons for hosting the event.
“One is that diversity is really important in higher education,” said Slotegraaf. “There are very few underrepresented faculty members and there’s very few underrepresented students in doctoral programs. There’s a strong importance for having faculty with diverse demographic backgrounds because they can serve as role models to students.”
According to the university, a frequent issue facing American business education is a shortage of academically trained faculty members from underrepresented populations.
“It’s important for individuals, whether they’re female or they come from an underrepresented background, to realize they have the potential to become a professor, and to have an impact on students and a proud impact on the research they conduct,” said Slotegraaf. “The second reason it’s important is because it reinforces the importance of pursing diversity for business schools. This is not an issue for any one particular school. Reinforcing that there’s a collaborative nature of the Big Ten universities really reinforces and underscores the value of elevating diversity across all schools.”
IU says nine faculty members and five doctoral students from underrepresented groups at Big Ten schools will discuss the pursuit of an academic career and the impact one can make on today’s students and tomorrow’s business leaders.
Slotegraaf says targeted approaches such as this event help reach individuals and create awareness by focusing on providing information.
“I think it’s a proud moment because for the Kelley School championing this event, it reflects this larger momentum toward improving diversity,” said Slotegraaf. “Kelley has 50 different initiatives focused on understanding diversity, equity and inclusion, and breaking down implicit biases.”
The consecutive three-session virtual event, “Shape the Future of Diversity with a PhD,” is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.
You can connect to additional information and registration by clicking here.
Chair of Doctoral Programs at the Kelley School of Business Rebecca Slotegraaf discusses the importance of creating awareness for women and student of underrepresented backgrounds to the pathway of pursuing a doctoral degree.